Recently a reader recently submitted a list of questions.

Some of them were answered in an earlier post.

Here is the answer to one more: Did the NIXVM lawyers catch on to the sex (Raniere had with his female followers)?

For the most part, the lawyers – out of which there were about a dozen from half a dozen law firms – did not know about the sex life Raniere had at the time.

Most of them never met Raniere and dealt with Kristin Keeffe or Nancy Salzman, and for a time while I was there, myself.

Keith was a mystery to them as he was to most people outside the inner circle.

At the time he was mainly engaged in fighting Rick Ross, Joe O’Hara, Morris Sutton and Edgar Bronfman (or using him as a foil to extract loyalty and money from his daughters Clare and Sara).

As for Toni Natalie – it was the contention at the time that she had stolen from Raniere. (later the truth came out – and more on that later).

As for the lawyers – they did not like the way they were treated by NXIVM but they loved the money so they stayed.

High pay, six (and seven)  figure billings and all they had to do was engage in one crazy scheme after another – most of them bound to lose.

The relationship with the lawyers were pretty formal. None got into the lifestyle. And since most of them were from out of town they never saw NXIVM life on a daily basis.

I do recall two lawyers and a legal aide took an intensive.

Or tried to.

After the first day they were saying there was nothing new in the course – it was just a regurgitation of old philosophies.

Somewhere between the second and third day the legal aide got so scared he ran out of the intensive, and took a train home – without even taking leave of his boss.

By the third day the two lawyers also had enough and they did not show on the 4th day.

The legal assistant realized that some form of hypnosis was in play, he told me.

There is little doubt in my mind that hypnosis is part of the intensive – used to open up people’s minds to new suggestions.

While I never took an intensive (more on that later) by speaking to many who had, I made this conjecture:

By being in an intensive, for those long sessions, eating frugally, getting little sleep, being probed on emotional issues hour after hour, and by mind-numbing debate – arbitrated by the proctor or teacher – the mind cannot remain on “conscious” guard all the time. It lapses into the open field of the subconscious and is ready for suggestions.

The intensives therefore are about keeping the student captive until his or her subconscious mind is open to suggestions and a series of suggestions are implanted.

Some of these perhaps are positive; some of them are based on the adoration of Raniere and to a lesser extent Nancy Salzman. The hypnotic or subconscious suggestion to adore, follow and obey the leader, Raniere, is subtle and brilliantly executed.

It is done subtly throughout the intensive while overtly a person is working on his or her life issues and getting an impression that everything will be well and all will be solved in their life by learning these new techniques – which were brought to you by the kindest, most noble benefactor – the smartest man in the world – someone who truly loves you and cares about you – Keith Raniere – the Vanguard and his noble helper, the Prefect, Nancy Salzman.

You can well imagine that most lawyers – especially the rough neck types NXIVM required to practice “scorched earth” litigation attacks on enemies would not be interested in such intensive.

If they became simple followers of Raniere – gullible believers – would they be ineffective lawyers?

Who’s to say.

About the author

Frank Parlato

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About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083


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