On Monday, Mexican authorities closed in on Keith Raniere, co-founder of the controversial, cult-like self-help group NXIVM. The Albany, New York-based NXIVM is, according its website, “a community guided by humanitarian principles that seek to empower people and answer important questions about what it means to be human.”
Charged with sex trafficking and forced labor conspiracy, Raniere, 57 – known as “Vanguard” to his followers – was arrested at a $10,000/week luxury villa near Puerto Vallarta and extradited to Texas for arraignment. Charges from prosecuters would include the fact that Raniere had spoken in favor of incest, said gang rape was acceptable if the woman had an orgasm, and engaged in sexual relations with at least one underage member of his cult.
Federal prosecutors said in court papers that Raniere, who was known inside the organization as “Vanguard,” engaged in relationships with two underage girls, including a 15-year-old thus adding child pornography charges in March 2019, three weeks before the trial was set to begin.
Rainiere did not seek bail during an initial court appearance on Tuesday in Fort Worth, and will be transported to Brooklyn this week for preliminary hearings. On Tuesday, FBI agents raided the home of NXIVM president Nancy Salzman (“Prefect” to her followers) as well as another home in upstate New York, which former NXIVM publicist Frank Parlato believes was that of disgraced NXIVM-linked doctor Brandon Porter.
Considered a cult by some experts, NXIVM was thrown into the national spotlight last fall when the New York Times interviewed several women claiming to have been forcibly branded as part of their entree to a secret NXIVM sect called DOS. After that story broke, the U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn reportedly launched an investigation into NXIVM, and Raniere fled to Mexico with some female followers. (That reportedly included Smallville actress Allison Mack, who was photographed at the scene of his arrest in Mexico).
Mack was aggressively recruited in hopes that she would become their Tom Cruise-like figure and publicize the group much like the actor had done with Scientology.
If convicted, Raniere faces 15 years to life. Here’s what we learned from the newly released criminal complaint against Raniere, filed by FBI agent Michael Lever and unsealed in a Brooklyn court on Monday.
Since founding NXIVM’s umbrella org ESP (Executive Success Programs), Raniere has allegedly maintained a rotating cast of 15 to 20 women he’s had active sexual relationships with.
According to the complaint, the women must remain sexually faithful to Raniere and are not permitted to discuss their relationships with him. The document also states that NXIVM’s course teachings advocate that men must have “multiple sexual partners” while women must be monogamous, and that DOS strives to help women overcome their “inherent weaknesses” and “overemotional natures.”
DOS’ “master-slave” participants allegedly thought they were joining a women-only sorority, and Raniere’s position at the top of the group was withheld.
Per the complaint, NXIVM’s secret society, DOS, is a pyramid-style “organized criminal group” with levels of “slaves headed by masters.” The document alleges that Raniere is the singular ruling “master” and sole male member of DOS (also reportedly known as “The Vow”). The society is rumored to have formed around 2015; DOS allegedly stands for “Domunus Obsequious Sororium,” which loosely translates to “Lord/Master of the Obedient Female Companions.”
When luring a new DOS member, the complaint says that masters required “collateral” in the form of incriminating photos, videos, or “damning” confessions about a recruit or her family. This material was allegedly used to blackmail members into staying put, as well as to dissuade them from speaking up about what they were exposed to within the group. The complaint alleges that DOS members had to provide new collateral once a month, and according to a statement from U.S. Attorney Richard P. Donoghue, members were also threatened with having their assets stolen.
The complaint also states that many DOS slaves were allegedly forced to participate in a torture ritual in which they were held down naked by other members and branded with Raniere’s initials using a cauterizing device. The complaint says these encounters were filmed.
DOS members were allegedly forced to provide “acts of care” for masters – and have sex with Raniere.
The complaint states that DOS slaves were forced to serve their masters in various “acts of care,” including running errands for them, cleaning their homes and preparing food for them. They were also reportedly forced to perform uncomfortable “acts of self-denial,” such as taking icy showers or “standing for an hour at 4 a.m.”
The document says that slaves were given “assignments” to perform as part of their tenure, and these assignments could include sex with Raniere. Some slaves were also allegedly tasked with following brutally low-calorie starvation diets to remain extremely thin, a physical preference of Raniere’s. The women tasked with having sex with Raniere reportedly believed they risked the release of their collateral if they refused. According to Raniere’s detention memo filed by U.S. Attorney Donoghue, “The government estimates that the defendant has had more than fifty DOS slaves under him.”
In the criminal complaint, one defector known as “Jane Doe 1” claimed Raniere offered her a job and gave her money after she slept with him, but said he asked for the money back after she left the group.
Keith Raniere allegedly did not act alone.
Raniere’s co-conspirators – dubbed CC-1 and CC-2 in the complaint – reportedly played active roles in the alleged sex trafficking happening within the group. CC-1, a “direct slave” of Raniere’s, is described as an actress with a longtime relationship with Raniere (her video interviews with Raniere are mentioned). Frank Parlato, NXIVM’s ex-publicist and a whistleblower, has stated that “Smallville” actress Allison Mack, 35, is “CC-1” and he believes that she will likely be arrested shortly. (She was arrested on April 20th, 2018)
The complaint also describes agents obtaining a search warrant for Raniere’s Yahoo email address. Within those emails, agents reportedly uncovered an email from CC-1 pledging her “full and complete life” to Raniere in a letter she called a “vow.” They found other emails serving as collateral for CC-1, including a letter meant to destroy the character of her mother and father and a note “addressed to social services alleging abuse to CC-1’s nephews.”
In the complaint, CC-1 is directly implicated in various stories shared by DOS defector “Jane Doe 1,” who shared disturbing stories of alleged manipulation and sexual abuse at the hands of Raniere. The document states that CC-1 forced her slaves to pose for nude photographs, “including close-up pictures of their vaginas,” which she then passed along to Raniere.
In addition to being forced into sexual encounters with Raniere in various locations and circumstances, the complaint describes that at least one of Jane Doe 1’s other “assignments” was to edit up to 95 “dense articles” written by Raniere.
The complaint states that CC-2 is CC-1’s “direct slave” and a co-founder of a side NXIVM group called the Delegates. In the complaint, an actress and model known as “Jane Doe 2” recalls being recruited into DOS by CC-2 while on a walk in Clifton Park, New York, during a NXIVM seminar. Jane Doe 2 defected in 2016 after CC-1 tried to push her into the “special assignment” of seducing Raniere and then documenting “proof” of the encounter afterward. But before she left for good, Jane Doe 2 reportedly captured images of collateral of other members in the hopes of preventing her own collateral from being leaked.
Raniere may be getting rich off NXIVM.
According to the complaint, classes offered by NXIVM and other linked groups can cost up to $5,000 for a five-day workshop. The document alleges that NXIVM is run like a multi-level marketing scheme, with members “encouraged to keep attending classes and to recruit others” into the group to hit various “goal levels.” The memo also notes that participants’ “goal levels” are indicated via the color of sash they wear, with some members eligible to earn either salaries or sales commissions. The complaint alleges that many members descend into debt from the cost of the courses. Oh, and group members are also reportedly expected to pay $2,000 or more to celebrate Raniere’s birthday during a weeklong celebration known as “Vanguard Week.” (His birthday is August 26, 1960.)
Raniere allegedly gets financial help from high places
The billionaire heiresses, Clare (arrested in July 2018 on charges of racketeering and released on $100mil bond) and Sara Bronfman, donated hundreds of millions to the “female mentorship group” since the early 2000s, against the wishes of their father, Bronfman patriarch Edgar Sr. The Bronfman sisters’ brother Matthew is on the board of directors of Bronfman & Rothschild Wealth Advisors along with investment matriarch Lynn Forester de Rothschild.
In the memo, prosecutors wrote, “[Bronfman] has financed the defendant repeatedly over the years including providing him with millions of dollars and paying for private air travel costing up to approximately $65,000 a flight. She has also paid for numerous lawyers to bring suits against NXIVM critics. Bronfman also owns a private island in Fiji, which the defendant has visited, and both Bronfman and the defendant have contacts all around the world.”
“Executives and top associates of the Albany-based NXIVM group – along with their family members – donated $29,900 to Clinton’s presidential campaign, according to federal records,” reported Charles Hurt. Interestingly, NXIVM member and actress Allison Mack tweeted out a photograph of infamous “Spirit Cooking” artist Marina Abromovic in January – the same Abromovic with whom Clinton campaign manager John Podesta attended the bizarre ceremonies. Additionally, the Bronfman sisters and Salzman are also members of the Clinton Global Initiative
The cult held wild parties on billionaire Richard Branson’s private Caribbean island at least twice. It’s also worth noting that former President Obama vacationed with Branson on Necker Island last year. Branson endorsed one of Keith Raniere’s “empowerment” groups called the Ethical Humanitarian Foundation, according to its website. “The tools you have for compassionately dealing with complex ethical and global issues are not only unique, but also extremely valuable,” Branson said on the EHF’s “Endorsements” page. “This, along with a program of coordinated, organized resources, makes for an innovative approach to transforming our society. I think your founding event will be extraordinary and potentially world changing!”
As we’ve reported, other wealthy liberal elites are shown to have ties to the sex group. Moreover, convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein had Branson and Bill Clinton listed among his contacts in his “little black book,” and his private island known as “Orgy Island” is less than 40 miles away from Necker Island within the Virgin Islands cluster.
The resident physician of the NXIVM sex cult was charged with illegally conducting twisted human experiments. According to a New York oversight board, Dr. Brandon Porter forced Canadian actress and former NXIVM member Jennifer Kobelt to watch gang rape and dismemberment videos and recorded her reaction for a “fright study” that was allegedly conducted on over 100 other people.
“He continued to film my reaction for at least 10 minutes as I just sat there, dry heaving like I was going to puke and crying very hard,” Kobelt said in the Health Department complaint. He showed “human subjects an actual video of the horrific and brutal murders and dismemberment of four women by machetes; and violent film clips, including a male African American being viciously stomped by a Nazi; a conscious male being forced to eat a portion of his own brain matter; and a graphic gang rape.”