I suppose that a deal would rob him of the opportunity to gain further publicity for his dad’s theories concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls, so a trial it is. And if it’s anything like the trial presently going on in Israel of Oded Golan, we will all be dead before it’s over.
Plea negotiations broke down this morning for accused Dead Sea Scrolls cyber-bully Raphael Golb — who now says he’s taking his wacky identity theft and impersonation case to trial. Golb, 49, is charged with trying to boost his historian father’s scholarship on the 2,000 year old scrolls by going online in the name of rival scholars — notably Dr. Lawrence Schiffman of New York University — to discredit their work. Plea negotiations before Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Carol Berkman fell apart today when prosecutors insisted that any deal include probation — a deal breaker for Golb, said his lawyer, Ronald Kuby.
Not a surprise really. But is it all a tempest in a teapot? Hardly.
… prosecutors say Golb caused real damage to the reputations of his professor father’s academic adversaries in stealing their identities. “This was no innocent little spoof,” said Schiffman in a telephone interview today. Golb had allegedly gone online posing as Schiffman — sending out emails to as many as 400 academic colleagues in a single day in which he purportedly “confessed” to being a plagiarist. NYU took the bogus “confession” seriously enough to mount an investigation, Schiffman said. “If I had been found guilty, I would have lost my job, my tenure, my reputation and my livelihood,” Schiffman said. “You can call it a game all you want,” he added, “but that doesn’t mean anything. Russian Roulette is a game too.” Trial has been set for Sept. 13.
Golb can hardly prevail. But he can hardly lose either- since the real aim here is to get word out about dad’s ideas. Stay tuned. And, by the way, Bob Cargill has some background info here.