According to the Albany Times Union – a federal appeals court in Washington, DC has upheld the order of another federal court in Texas that requires NXIVM founder Keith Raniere to pay more than $444,000 in attorneys’ fees to AT&T and Microsoft.
Raniere had claimed the companies stole his invention – teleconferencing – and violated the patents regarding the underlying technology.
A federal judge threw out the case last year, calling Raniere a liar – and ordered Raniere to pay the companies’ legal fees. Raniere could not prove he owned the patents and lied like a Bronfman on the witness stand. The judge in that case said that Raniere’s testimony was “wholly incredible and untruthful.”
The new appellate decision was handed down as Raniere remains in the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons in an unrelated criminal case in which he is charged with sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit forced labor.
So, how doe Raniere pay off his debt to AT&T and Microsoft? Will he be able to use the money he had stashed in Pam Caftritz’s name?
Although Pam died in 2016, Raniere continued to access her bank account, which had $8 million in it at the time of his arrest (He also had a credit card that was apparently linked to that account). He also obtained funds from the bank accounts of Mariana Fernandez and Rosa Laura Junco.
It’s likely that Pam’s account has been suspended. It is not known if the Feds have moved to seize the money.
Meantime, it appears he still has the notorious perjurer Clare Bronfman backing him. Whether she will pay the $444,000 fine remains to be seen. The fact is there is not much the courts can do if he doesn’t pay it and frankly he has bigger issues than a money judgment being filed against him.
Chances are AT&T and Microsoft can survive without the money.
If you find it implausible that Raniere invented teleconferencing and then mislaid the patent, you’re not alone. That’s evidently what the judge thought too.