He may be the creepiest quack in Brooklyn – a bogus cancer doctor charged with a crime so heinous it earned him the highest bail in state history.
Michail Sorodsky, 63, not only failed to heal the gravely ill women who forked over wads of cash for his holistic therapies, he sexually molested them and even raped at least one sedated patient, prosecutors say.
Jury selection in the skin-crawling case begins in Brooklyn Supreme Court this week while Sorodsky continues to be held on an eye-popping $11 million cash bail or $33 million bond a figure higher – more than even Bernie Madoff faced.
Authorities say Sorodsky slathered his victims in a probiotic yogurt, inserting the concoction into their genitalia, claiming they would be healed.
“He tells people he can cure them, and nobody gets better,” said prosecutor Thomas Schellhammer, of the state’s Attorney General’s office. Sorodsky, who isn’t licensed to practice medicine, is facing 102 counts ranging from rape to fraud.
All the charges stem from just eight victims, but prosecutors say he treated hundreds of people – mainly Russian immigrants in Brooklyn who paid as much as $1,000 per visit.
The late Malka Klots was a patient. When her daughter Rimma heard of Sorodsky’s unorthodox treatment for liver cancer, she sensed something was fishy. So she posed as a patient and was horrified by what she found at Sorodsky’s Sheepshead Bay office.
“What he was doing was, he was giving a gynecological exam, and he was giving a breast exam. It wasn’t necessary. It didn’t feel like a doctor’s examination,” the 46-year-old teacher recalled. “He did say inappropriate things. Something like, ‘Your breasts look good.'”
She filed a complaint with the Division of Licensing, which led to an investigation that ended with Sorodsky’s 2007 arrest.
It was too late for her mother, who died in 2001 after her cancer spread to her spine.
“She put everything into this treatment, all her hope,” Rimma Klots said.
In court, Sorodsky cuts a bizarre spectacle. Wearing a crumpled yarmulke atop gray frizzy hair, he relies heavily on a Russian translator, but is prone to frequent outbursts in English.
“It is inquisition,” he blurted out during a hearing. “I am somebody, pioneer. I am a scientist.”
He claims to be unable to see and sports big black shades in court, but sources described him as “conveniently blind.”
He also goes through lawyers like tissues and is currently on his 13th.
The accused quack is being tried alongside his 62-year-old wife, Beverly Sorodsky, who’s acting as her own lawyer. She faces nine, mostly larceny, counts, but is still being held in lieu of $1 million cash or $3 million bond.
Sorodsky’s current attorney, Aaron Mysliwiec, said the high bail was “punitive and unfair.”
“He’s denying the charges against him and looking forward to trial,” Mysliwiec said.
The defense is expected to argue that Sorodsky never presented himself as a doctor, but as a holistic healer – which requires no license – and that his patients returned voluntarily even after supposedly being abused.
Prosecutors claim otherwise, saying Sorodsky instructed clients to stay away from mainstream medicine.