Sex Offender Hired to Guard Petah Tikva Day Care Center

Police stress that on these jobs, no child was believed to have been assailed.

A man jailed for seven years for molesting a child has been working as security guard for a day care facility and two schools in Petah Tikva, police said yesterday. Police stress that on these jobs, no child was believed to have been assailed by Nestor Krotzko, 35. The company who hired him said Krotzko had been working for them for only two days.

Petah Tivah day care, Moti Milrod
Moti Milrod

Employing a convicted sex offender is a criminal offense, but it remains unclear what action will be taken against the private company that hired Krotzko.

In June 2002, Krotzko persuaded a teenager in the southern city where he lived to go with him to a bomb shelter, where he showed the boy pornographic films and molested him. He was caught, convicted and spent seven years in prison, watched by the sex offenders monitoring unit. He was also monitored after his release on the condition that he not work near a school or other facility with children.

An officer in the monitoring unit noticed days ago a change in Krotzko's behavior and a quick investigation revealed he was employed as a security guard at a day care center. The clear violation of his release terms led to his being arrested by the Petah Tikva police. It was found Krotzko was employed by a private contractor called Reshet Bitachon (safety net ), which had won a tender from the Petah Tikva municipality to guard the city's education facilities. Krotzko told police he was not put through any special checks by his employers.

The law specifically instructs security companies to look into the background of guards who could be posted in educational institutions, and hiring a sex offender for such a post is a criminal offense. The company told police Krotzko had been employed by them for only two days, and no information on his background had yet been received.

The company told police the inspector responsible for hiring Krotzko has already been dismissed, and police say they are considering whether to press charges against the firm.

The Israel Prisons Service sex offenders monitoring unit came into being with a law passed in October 2006. The law stipulates that should a released sex offender, like Krotzko, be deemed as posing a high degree of risk to the public, he must report regularly, sometimes even daily, to a monitoring officer. The unit is also empowered to stage surprise visits and searches, to track the offender's movements and to enforce such limitations as a ban from certain areas or from access to pornography.

The unit monitors more than 380 registered sex offenders released since October 2006.

A 2001 law prohibits individuals who were convicted of sexual offenses carried out as adults from working in places with access to minors or the mentally and developmentally handicapped. The list includes schools, day care centers, youth centers, gyms, kindergartens, zoos, pediatric clinics, hospitals, summer camps and more. A clause stipulates the prohibition covers employment through a human resources company. Breaking this law is punishable by a year's imprisonment for the offender and a fine for the employer.