Sexual assault victim (stock image)
Sexual assault victim (stock image) i-Stock

An illegal immigrant living in Israel is demanding visitation rights to see a child he fathered after allegedly raping an Israeli woman, in a bid to win legal status permitting him to remain in the country.

According to attorney Roni Aloni Sadovnik, who represents the victim, the suspect raped the young woman two years ago, and has since demanded he be recognized as the child’s father and given visitation rights.

“An illegal resident raped a young Israeli woman,” Sadovnik wrote on her Facebook account earlier this week, “and by the time she realized that she was pregnant from the rape, it was too late to have an abortion, and she decided to raise the baby.”

The young woman filed a police complaint following the sexual assault, but “like 92% of sex crime complaints, the case was closed due to lack of evidence.”

Sadovnik told Arutz Sheva that police have since reopened the case against the suspect, and believes that an indictment is likely.

But the suspect, who is not one of the nearly 40,000 infiltrators from Eritrea, Sudan, and Somalia subject to Israel’s deportation plan, is looking to gain legal status as the father of an Israeli citizen.

“The man who committed the rape is a worker who came to Israel legally on a work visa years ago, but overstayed, and is now an illegal resident,” Sadovnik told Arutz Sheva.

Sadovnik said the suspect filed a request with an Israeli family court, seeking to be given status as the parent of an Israeli citizen. If granted, the suspect could be granted not only visitation rights, but a visa to remain in Israel.

“This is a creative new way for an illegal resident to try and force the state to give him legal standing in Israel as the ‘father’ of an Israeli child.”

Sadovnik added that, to her surprise, social services officials have aided the suspect’s attempts to gain recognition as the child’s father, and to secure visitation rights.

“I asked if there was any chance that welfare services would recommend visits for a rapist with the child that was conceived during the rape [the suspect] committed,” Sadovnik asked a social worker who had contacted her in connection with the case.

“She responded that it doesn’t matter if the father is a rapist, a murderer, a pedophile, or a drug addict – the child has the right to meet his father no matter what, because it is ‘for the child’s benefit’.”

While the suspect’s initial request to be given recognized status as the parent of an Israeli was denied, he may appeal the decision.

The case is an unusual one, Sadovnik said, but it is not uncommon for illegal immigrants residing in Israel to seek legal status as the spouses of Israeli citizens, adding that there have been many instances of illegal residents soliciting Israeli women to falsely claim to be their common-law spouses.

“I can’t understand how illegal residents – people who have no legal right to be in the country in the first place – can go to an Israeli court and make demands, and have those demands be taken seriously,” Sadovnik told Arutz Sheva.

“Besides that, why are social workers helping people under investigation for rape or other serious violent crimes get visitation rights to see their children? This happens even in some cases where the parent has been convicted of serious violent crimes, including attempted murder, and then from jail requests visitation rights.”

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