Charles Manson, leader of murderous ’60s cult, dead at 83; Keith Raniere, leader of blackmail and female branding cult, aged 57, alive and well

Charles Manson (right) being escorted to the courtroom by a sheriff's deputy (August 11, 1970)

Charles Manson, the wild-eyed 1960s cult leader whose followers committed heinous murders that terrorized Los Angeles and shocked the nation, died Sunday of natural causes, according to the California Department of Corrections. He was 83.


Keith Raniere, the cross eyed, 2000s cult leader whose followers continue to commit heinous crimes like blackmail and branding women, is alive and well. He is 57.

The diminutive and charismatic Manson orchestrated a wave of violence in August 1969 that took the lives of seven people, spawned headlines worldwide and landed him and his “Manson Family” of followers in prison for most of the remainder of their lives.

The diminutive and charismatic Raniere has orchestrated a wave of felonious embezzling, swindling, coercion, sex crimes, hazing, blackmail, computer crimes, tax evasion, bulk cash smuggling, visa fraud, extortion and conspiracy and retaliation against women since 1998 and has recently spawned headlines worldwide but remains free primarily because law enforcement seems intimidated by his ferocious powers.

Manson served nine life terms in California prisons and was denied parole 12 times. His notoriety, boosted by popular books and films, made him a cult figure to those fascinated by his dark apocalyptic visions.

Raniere lives comfortably in Clifton Park and has an escape island in Fiji. His notoriety has recently been boosted by news articles about the branding of his sex slaves but be has yet to achieve the fame of Manson.

“Manson was the dictatorial ruler of the (Manson) family, the king, the Maharaja. And the members of the family were slavishly obedient to him,” former prosecutor Victor Bugliosi told CNN in 2015. To the point they would kill for him.

Raniere is the dictatorial ruler of NXIVM, the Vanguard. And the members of NXIVM are slavishly obedient to him, Frank Report claims. To the point they would get branded and give him blackmail-worthy material and commit other crimes for  him.

“I was mesmerized by his mind and the things he professed,” Manson Family member Leslie van Houten once said.

“I was mesmerized by his mind and the things he professed,” NXIVM Family member Nancy Salzman once said.

At the ranch, Manson, who was 5-feet-2, hosted LSD fueled orgies and gave sermons. His followers were in thrall of Manson, who told them he was Jesus Christ and the devil, rolled into one.


At the Intensives, Raniere, who is 5-feet-4, hosts hypnotically fueled orgies and gives word-salad sermons. His followers are in thrall of Raniere, who has told them he is Vanguard, Buddha, Jesus Christ, and Lucifer, rolled into one.


   “They worshiped Charlie like a god,” former Manson Family member Barbara Hoyt told CNN.


   “They worshiped Vanguard like a god,” ex-NXIVM member, Barbara Bouchey said.


Charles Manson excelled on many instruments.
Keith Raniere excels on many instruments – or so he claims.
Do Charles Manson and Keith Raniere share several qualities? Now, only one lives on to share his unique talents with the world.

With the passing of Charles Manson, America turns to Keith Raniere as its greatest cult leader.


No photo exists of Charles Raniere. Nor are there any of Keith Manson. But if any did, they might look like this.


About the author

Frank Parlato

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6 years ago

If Charles Manson and Bennie Madoff were to have a son, it would be Keith Raniere. Money con man and mad sexual psyco.

With Raniere’s brain fright research that Raniere and Porter are doing, what was the end game? Is it the Tate killing fields all over again the end game?

Why the police are not taking a closer look at this guy is beyond me. Tax evasion alone would lock them all up while the other illegal issues get figured out.

power of controlling access to outside "data"
power of controlling access to outside "data"
6 years ago

Manson and Raniere used the same cult-proven technique to mindfuck their followers…

From Helter Skelter:
“You can convince anybody of anything,” Manson said in court, “if you just push it at them all of the time. They may not believe it 100%, but they will still draw opinions from it, especially if they have no other information to draw their opinions from.”

I’m sure Keith agrees….

"What's Trending" on YouTube: NXIVM
"What's Trending" on YouTube: NXIVM
6 years ago

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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