Convicted rapist Goldblatt’s sentence reduced

Supreme Court cuts sentence of rapist, serial molester Hanan Goldblatt,69, from seven to six years in prison.

Hanan Goldblatt 311 (photo credit: Channel 10 News)
Hanan Goldblatt 311
(photo credit: Channel 10 News)
The Supreme Court reduced the sentence of convicted rapist and serial molester Hanan Goldblatt from seven to six years in prison, in an appeal decision issued Thursday.
Dismissing dozens of motions by the former television star’s lawyers to appeal, Justice Uzi Vogleman decided in the end to reduce one of the charges of which the 69-year-old Goldblatt was convicted from rape to obtaining a thing by deceit.
In 2008, the Tel Aviv District Court convicted Goldblatt of raping two young women and of committing indecent acts against three others. In all of the cases, Goldblatt, who also worked as an acting teacher, used a similar method of offering the young women private acting lessons, during which he attempted to commit – and in two cases succeeded in committing – sexual acts with them.
Goldblatt made up a story that he wanted to have them try out for a fictitious theatrical project of some sort. In each case, the victim was to play a young seductress.
Sex with Goldblatt was supposed to better prepare the aspiring actresses for onscreen love scenes, which the women were supposed to perform in their auditions.
In the appeal, Goldblatt’s lawyers attempted to undermine the testimonies of the victims and introduce doubt as to the justness of the lower court’s decision. In all but one of the motions, the lawyers failed, and the Supreme Court judges upheld the District Court’s rulings; however, in one of the motions relating to Goldblatt’s second rape victim, the Supreme Court modified the conviction.
The modified charge had to do with a young woman who, like the others, had become convinced that Goldblatt had destined her for a leading role in a television soap opera, and repeatedly agreed to have sex with him in preparation for the role.
Goldblatt managed to convince the woman that to be a successful actress and win future roles, she had to become comfortable with performing intercourse and that having sex with him would help “loosen her up.”
“In April 2004, M.S. came to the appellant’s home in order to rehearse. The two entered the bedroom, undressed and kissed, and the appellant asked her to initiate sex between them, since in the proposed role she was supposed to seduce him. M.S. complied with his instructions and engaged full intercourse with him, after which the appellant told her he would notify her of the director’s decision,” read the judge’s ruling.
“Several days later, the appellant told M.S. that the time had not yet come for a meeting with the director and that first she had to ‘improve,’ and therefore that they had to continue practicing sex,” the ruling stated.
According to the facts of the case, the woman agreed to continue having sex with Goldblatt and did so on several occasions over the course of the summer.
Goldblatt was originally convicted of rape, despite the fact that M.S had agreed to have sex with him, because the consent had been obtained by deceit regarding the nature of the act. The disagreement between Supreme Court justices Vogleman and Asher Grunis, and the District Court judge was over whether or not the victim had in fact been deceived about the nature of the act.
The Supreme Court judges found that M.S. had not truly been deceived into repeatedly having sex with Goldblatt purely for the purpose of obtaining the role, since she had been aware of the personal gratification he received from the act and had continued to have sex with him even when it was clear that the sex was supposedly meant for her general improvement as an actress, and not for a specific role.
“The plaintiff believed the appellant’s falsities regarding the necessity for looseness and openness between them in order to improve their ability to ‘work’ together and prepare for the role. But this deceit does not touch on the ‘nature of the act,’ since the subject of the deceit was not the sexual act, but rather an external goal that got caught up in it, the professional goal,” wrote Vogleman.
In her minority ruling, Justice Edna Arbel wrote that M.S. had been deceived about the purpose of the sex acts themselves.
“She believed, due to the duplicitous ploy of the appellant, that the sole purpose of the intercourse was professional and meant to train her for sex scenes in the anticipated soap opera and for her expected audition.”
With the rape charges reduced, Goldblatt was sentenced to six years in prison.
Taking into account time served and a third of the sentence reduced for good behavior, Goldblatt is expected to be released in 2013.
“The Supreme Court’s decision is important and strengthens the knowledge that we are dealing with a serial sex offender who harmed young women, some of whom were minors,” wrote the Association of Rape Crisis Centers in Israel in response to the ruling. “Goldblatt, like all sex offenders, belongs in jail, and the court has understood that, too.”