According to the lawsuit the woman didn’t say she was raped when she met with the first detectives. NewsdayTV's Shari Einhorn reports.  Credit: Newsday Staff

A Nassau prosecutor “conspired” with a woman who falsely said she had been raped to fabricate a narrative for a grand jury that indicted a Kings Point man on sexual assault charges in August 2021, a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Nassau County Supreme Court alleges.

The lawsuit filed by Yossef Kahlon, 57, does not identify the Nassau County District Attorney employee his lawyers said helped the accuser commit perjury by concocting a story that led to criminal charges. In October, a Nassau jury acquitted Kalon, who faced up to 25 years in prison, of rape, aggravated sexual assault and criminal sexual act.

The allegations, Kahlon said during a news conference Wednesday at the Garden City offices of his attorneys, Bruce Barket, Kevin Kearon and Danielle Muscatello, led to his divorce, forced him to resign from a corporate board, and cost him business opportunities. It hurt his reputation in his neighborhood and damaged his relationship with his children. He filed the lawsuit, he said, to reclaim his reputation.

“The stigma, it stays with you,” Kahlon said. “it doesn’t go away.”

The court papers say the woman’s allegations were among a “stubborn minority” of cases that use the #MeToo movement to accuse consensual partners of sexual misconduct, ruining lives, careers and reputations. Two Nassau police detectives who investigated the woman’s allegations determined that charges were not appropriate, but the district attorney’s office filed charges anyway, after a #MeToo organization pressured police and prosecutors to arrest Kahlon.

“We are bringing an action to seek compensation for the damages that were done to him, and to push back on this idea that any time an allegation of rape is made, that there needs to be an arrest,” Barket said. “This should not have happened.”

The complaint names Nassau County, Kahlon’s accuser, unidentified employees of the Nassau District Attorney’s Office and representatives of unnamed #MeToo organizations as defendants and seeks unspecified compensatory damages, punitive damages and legal fees. Newsday is not identifying the woman because of the nature of the charges filed against Kahlon.

Veteran prosecutor Joyce Smith was the acting Nassau County District Attorney at the time of Kahlon’s arrest.

The lawsuit argues the #MeToo movement has created “troubling incentive structures” that push police and prosecutors to pursue cases.

Representatives of Nassau County and the district attorney’s office declined to comment Wednesday.

The alleged victim told Newsday she wished to speak to an attorney before commenting but did not return a subsequent request for comment.

An advocate for sexual assault victims called the lawsuit’s theory about the #MeToo movement “patently untrue.”

“The #MeToo movement and its immediate aftermath undoubtedly increased awareness that these cases need to be taken seriously,” said Josh Hanson, executive director of The Safe Center LI, which provides support to victims of sexual assault. “But the burden of proof has remained the same.”

The lawsuit alleges the woman told a Nassau police detective that she only had reported the incident because Kahlon shortchanged her for a six-hour sexual tryst at his home.

The lawsuit says the encounter was recorded on Kahlon’s home surveillance system and that the video would have proved that the allegations were false. The victim told Nassau police that the tryst had been recorded, but officials failed to obtain the video or interview Kahlon, the lawsuit alleges.

The complaint says Kahlon and the woman met via Seeking.com, a website that connects affluent men with women in need of financial assistance. The woman joined Kahlon at his Kings Point home in January 2021 and they engaged in sexual activity for several hours, according to the lawsuit. Neither was intoxicated and the woman was free to leave at any time, the lawsuit states.

Kahlon paid the woman $420 for the six hours they spent together, the lawsuit says, and she told him she usually got $800 to $1,500 for such encounters. When Kahlon told her he had no more cash, she gave him her checking account number and routing number.

The woman returned home to Manhattan and later complained to friends that Kahlon had underpaid her.

“Her friends, knowing Mr. Kahlon was a wealthy man who lived in a mansion, encouraged her to file a police report in an effort to extort money from him, indicating that he would pay her because he would not want her allegation to go to a court,” the court papers allege.

The woman acknowledged that she had gone to Kahlon’s home knowing she would be paid for her time and agreed to have sex with him when she was interviewed by Nassau police Det. Luis Salazar, the lawsuit alleges.

The woman also admitted that she went to the police because her friends insisted she could extort him for extra money or obtain a financial judgment if he was convicted of sexual assault, according to the lawsuit.

Salazar told the woman he could not arrest Kahlon based on what she had told him and closed the investigation. Her lawyers and #MeToo advocates then pressured Nassau police and the district attorney’s office to bring criminal charges against Kahlon, according to the lawsuit.

Two months into that campaign, the lawsuit says, the woman was interviewed by Det. Aileen Newbold. Newbold also declined to pursue charges.

A Nassau prosecutor “conspired” with a woman who falsely said she had been raped to fabricate a narrative for a grand jury that indicted a Kings Point man on sexual assault charges in August 2021, a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Nassau County Supreme Court alleges.

The lawsuit filed by Yossef Kahlon, 57, does not identify the Nassau County District Attorney employee his lawyers said helped the accuser commit perjury by concocting a story that led to criminal charges. In October, a Nassau jury acquitted Kalon, who faced up to 25 years in prison, of rape, aggravated sexual assault and criminal sexual act.

The allegations, Kahlon said during a news conference Wednesday at the Garden City offices of his attorneys, Bruce Barket, Kevin Kearon and Danielle Muscatello, led to his divorce, forced him to resign from a corporate board, and cost him business opportunities. It hurt his reputation in his neighborhood and damaged his relationship with his children. He filed the lawsuit, he said, to reclaim his reputation.

“The stigma, it stays with you,” Kahlon said. “it doesn’t go away.”

WHAT TO KNOW

  • A lawsuit filed Wednesday alleges a Nassau prosecutor “conspired” with a woman who falsely said she had been raped to fabricate a narrative for a grand jury that indicted a Kings Point man on sexual assault charges in August 2021.
  • The lawsuit filed by Yossef Kahlon names Nassau County, Kahlon’s accuser, unidentified employees of the Nassau District Attorney’s Office and representatives of unnamed #MeToo organizations as defendants.
  • In October, a Nassau jury acquitted Kalon, who faced up to 25 years in prison, of rape, aggravated sexual assault and criminal sexual act.

The court papers say the woman’s allegations were among a “stubborn minority” of cases that use the #MeToo movement to accuse consensual partners of sexual misconduct, ruining lives, careers and reputations. Two Nassau police detectives who investigated the woman’s allegations determined that charges were not appropriate, but the district attorney’s office filed charges anyway, after a #MeToo organization pressured police and prosecutors to arrest Kahlon.

“We are bringing an action to seek compensation for the damages that were done to him, and to push back on this idea that any time an allegation of rape is made, that there needs to be an arrest,” Barket said. “This should not have happened.”

The complaint names Nassau County, Kahlon’s accuser, unidentified employees of the Nassau District Attorney’s Office and representatives of unnamed #MeToo organizations as defendants and seeks unspecified compensatory damages, punitive damages and legal fees. Newsday is not identifying the woman because of the nature of the charges filed against Kahlon.

Veteran prosecutor Joyce Smith was the acting Nassau County District Attorney at the time of Kahlon’s arrest.

The lawsuit argues the #MeToo movement has created “troubling incentive structures” that push police and prosecutors to pursue cases.

Representatives of Nassau County and the district attorney’s office declined to comment Wednesday.

The alleged victim told Newsday she wished to speak to an attorney before commenting but did not return a subsequent request for comment.

An advocate for sexual assault victims called the lawsuit’s theory about the #MeToo movement “patently untrue.”

“The #MeToo movement and its immediate aftermath undoubtedly increased awareness that these cases need to be taken seriously,” said Josh Hanson, executive director of The Safe Center LI, which provides support to victims of sexual assault. “But the burden of proof has remained the same.”

The lawsuit alleges the woman told a Nassau police detective that she only had reported the incident because Kahlon shortchanged her for a six-hour sexual tryst at his home.

The lawsuit says the encounter was recorded on Kahlon’s home surveillance system and that the video would have proved that the allegations were false. The victim told Nassau police that the tryst had been recorded, but officials failed to obtain the video or interview Kahlon, the lawsuit alleges.

The complaint says Kahlon and the woman met via Seeking.com, a website that connects affluent men with women in need of financial assistance. The woman joined Kahlon at his Kings Point home in January 2021 and they engaged in sexual activity for several hours, according to the lawsuit. Neither was intoxicated and the woman was free to leave at any time, the lawsuit states.

Kahlon paid the woman $420 for the six hours they spent together, the lawsuit says, and she told him she usually got $800 to $1,500 for such encounters. When Kahlon told her he had no more cash, she gave him her checking account number and routing number.

The woman returned home to Manhattan and later complained to friends that Kahlon had underpaid her.

“Her friends, knowing Mr. Kahlon was a wealthy man who lived in a mansion, encouraged her to file a police report in an effort to extort money from him, indicating that he would pay her because he would not want her allegation to go to a court,” the court papers allege.

The woman acknowledged that she had gone to Kahlon’s home knowing she would be paid for her time and agreed to have sex with him when she was interviewed by Nassau police Det. Luis Salazar, the lawsuit alleges.

The woman also admitted that she went to the police because her friends insisted she could extort him for extra money or obtain a financial judgment if he was convicted of sexual assault, according to the lawsuit.

Salazar told the woman he could not arrest Kahlon based on what she had told him and closed the investigation. Her lawyers and #MeToo advocates then pressured Nassau police and the district attorney’s office to bring criminal charges against Kahlon, according to the lawsuit.

Two months into that campaign, the lawsuit says, the woman was interviewed by Det. Aileen Newbold. Newbold also declined to pursue charges.

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