The mention of Susan Dones by a reader prompted me to recall that Dones, the former owner of the Tacoma NXIVM center; a field trainer, proctor, salesperson and head trainer for NXIVM, participated in filming a video posted on youtube where Keith Raniere mentions that people died for his beliefs and he had people killed for his beliefs.
Some people who have viewed the video related to me that they assume that Raniere (either truthfully or lying about it) is admitting that he ordered executions of people.
While critics have called NXIVM a dangerous cult, and it may indeed by true that Raniere has ordered a host of crimes against various people, it is quite possible that this is not what Raniere meant in the video.
Since this site is dedicated to providing people with accurate information about Raniere, and that readers are not only present and past NXIVM members – but also potential future NXIVM members, it is important that the full spectrum of information is made available to readers.
As for the killing quote, Raniere claims to female followers who confronted him with their concerns about the group, “Here’s the thing, I’ve had people killed because of my beliefs — or because of their beliefs.”
Raniere’s statement comes about 7 minutes into an 8 minute recording of a 2009 sit-down with two women whose faces have been shielded on the tape.
Raniere had taken exception to a comment one of the women made about a failed business that landed him in trouble with authorities.
“I’ve been shot at because of my beliefs,” Raniere claims. “I’ve had to make choices, ‘should I have bodyguards, should I have them armed, or not?’”
“But I’m leading an organization that is very good,” he says. “You might say ‘the brighter the light, the more the bugs…’ I think what we have is a very bright light.”
Dones, along with several others, recorded hours of meetings with Raniere as he tried to talk them out of leaving NXIVM.
According to a pro-NXIVM source, who I spoke to repeatedly, the people dying and being killed remark related to a documentary on the LeBaron family in Mexico where, allegedly, a member of the family was killed by drug lords in the middle of shooting the documentary made by Raniere disciple, Mark Vicente.
The alleged story is that Benjamin LeBaron was murdered by cartel members and that Raniere’s advice to the family to not pay ransom may have led to his death.
The story goes that, LeBaraon following Raniere’s advice, decided not to pay ransom and his son was released, and the father was killed for not paying ransom.
Raniere allegedly remarked, “I feel like I’m responsible for that, for my beliefs.”
While the advice might have been well intended, if the story is true, it shows that Raniere, often proclaimed by his followers to be the world’s smartest man, can give advice which is certainly not infallible.
The Vanguard (right) says he was shot at and had people killed for his beliefs