Facing Indictment, Is Clare Bronfman A Flight Risk?

Clare Bronfman 2017

Keith Raniere, the “Vanguard” and leader of the infamous sex-cult NXIVM is behind bars awaiting his October trial on federal felony charges of sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit forced labor. Joining him for their joint trial will be  his co-defendant, “Smallville” actress Allison Mack, who is currently out on a $5 million bond and under house arrest at her Mom’s house in California.

Clare Bronfman, the notorious Seagram’s heiress who federal authorities allege is Raniere’s and the sex-slave cult’s chief financier, is still on the loose.

She is likely at the least a subject –  and quite probably a target – of the Eastern District of New York’s (EDNY) current grand jury investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the EDNY announced last week that more indictments will likely be forthcoming in about a month to a month and a half.

Sex-slavers Keith Raniere (l) and Allison Mack (r)

Bronfman herself is likely as great a flight risk as the old Vanguard himself. When news of the infamous, coerced branding broke in June 2017 at  Frankreport.com, members began to flee, en masse, from NXIVM and its subsidiary entities, all of which are operated and controlled by Raniere and Bronfman. Shortly after the New York Times’ Barry Meier’s story was published, federal law enforcement in the EDNY took notice, and began interviewing witnesses. As alleged in Raniere’s federal complaint, Bronfman and Raniere flew together to Mexico after the federal investigation began (possibly making her an accessory after the fact).

Raniere and Bronfman have likely argued, or will argue, that the flight to Mexico was not done to escape or evade law enforcement, but done to assuage the Mexican NXIVM members about the recent bad press, and reassure them the the cult was doing just fine.

This is probably partly true. However, it took law enforcement a month and a half to apprehend Raniere

The EDNY authorities are, in fact, aware that Bronfman owns a private island in Fiji –  and that prior to Bronfman and Raniere’s trip to Mexico, 2015 was the last time Raniere had left the country. The feds are also aware that Bronfman has spent up to $65,000 per flight on Raniere, as they have alleged in their complaint.

If Bronfman will spend $65,000 per flight to amuse Raniere, will she spend at least that to save herself from jail and flee to her private island in Fiji, where extradition may not be had? Clare can, in fact, escape the feds to Fiji, and she has the resources to do so. Further, the EDNY U.S. Attorneys office alleged that Raniere “began using encrypted email and stopped using the phone that had been known to law enforcement shortly after the government began interviewing witnesses.” In Mexico, Raniere was reunited with one of his top lieutenants, Emiliano Salinas, the son of the former Mexican President, Carlos Salinas, one of the most powerful figures in Mexico and notoriously corrupt. Raniere likely hoped he could continue to kindle and maintain the cult in Mexico, and tap the powerful Salinas family to avoid extradition. If so, he miscalculated.

Regardless of Salinas, taking these allegations together with the flight to Mexico shortly after the initiation of the FBI investigation strongly suggests the primary purpose of the Bronfman/Raniere flight was to evade law enforcement in the United States.

If Bronfman can escape on her private jet to Wakaya island, the EDNY may never be able to bring her to justice. 

Some believe Miss Bronfman purchased land in Fiji as part of a plan for Mr. Raniere and her and select members of his harem to leave the U.S. in the event of imminent prosecution.

Now, Raniere is in the hoosegow, and he, Mack and others will be soon “in the dock.”

But Wakaya perhaps remains an appealing alternative for Bronfman to an indictment and a potential sentence of life in prison.

Clare Bronfman has access to a private jet that can take her to Fiji to avoid arrest.

As to extradition possibilities, Fiji has entered into bilateral agreements on surrender of fugitive offenders with  the United States. However, a person can be extradited to the United States only if the offence is a serious crime in Fiji. More importantly, extradition will NOT be approved if one of a number of Fiji officials determines that the offence is a political one, the purpose being to punish the person because of his religion, political opinion, religious, or philosophical teachings, or that surrender may be prejudiced by these considerations.

Any one of a series of officials can put a halt to extradition starting with the Attorney-General. If the Fiji Attorney General denies extradition, then the person will not be extradited. If they authorize extradition, a Magistrate conducts proceedings to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to warrant extradition.

If the Magistrate agrees to extradition, a judge decides if the person is to be extradited.

A judge may deny extradition or decide that instead of extradition he will allow the person to stand trial in Fiji instead of the USA.

A judge may also order the person extradited to the United States for trial only, then be returned to Fiji to serve any sentence the Fiji judge imposes.

Wakaya Island, 80% owned by Clare Bronfman, who may use it to seek her own asylum from the NXIVM probe.
Fiji’s extradition laws sound nice, but corruption is rampant. 

The U.S. Department of State, in its Human Rights Report on Fiji, stated that bureaucratic corruption in Fiji is systemic. According to the World Bank’s CORRUPTION AND ANTI-CORRUPTION IN FIJI  Enterprise Survey 2009, more than 35 per cent of the firms polled consider corruption as a major constraint for doing business in the country.

The Heritage Foundation reports that Fiji does not have an independent legal system and judicial corruption has become a major challenge to Fiji’s governance structure.

Given Bronfman’s vast resources and ready access to trust fund cash, there is a strong likelihood she can buy her way out of extradition to the U.S.; indeed, she has already bought the island of Wakaya itself.

With indictments to be handed down in the next month or so, will Bronfman be arrested in advance like the Feds did with the flight risk and community menace Raniere? It certainly would seem like the prudent thing to do.

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  • This whole thing freaks me out, as the property she owns and apparently spent some time at years ago is right around the corner from my house.
    To be honest I’ve wanted to get my hands on at least renting it for awhile… kinda hoping if she does get arrested, maybe it will be seized by the feds? Maybe some day be sold off or something? Idk. I just want her influence to stay far away from my home…

  • You bet she is… not. She believes she is above the law. I hope her calloused apathy leads her straight to prison.

  • This is just incredible I can’t stop reading all your in-depth reports. My question is do you think they’ll indict/arrest Clyne next or will she be deported. As far as it goes with the marriage fraud? Will Allison Mack turn on the Bronfman sisters in order to alleviate her sentence? And is anything being done to break up the Brooklyn pod?

  • She’s always been an arrogant bitch. And, she’s one of those who believe her great wealth protects her from all the unpleasantries that come from fucking people over on a consistent basis. Hopefully, Clare will continue being an arrogant bitch right up to the time the FBI arrests her. And, that cannot come soon enough. I would almost rather see Clare go down than Keith. The best of all worlds is both of these criminals spending the rest of their tawdry ,sordid broken lives in prison.

  • Whoever the executor of the Bronfman sister’s trust is about to have a lot more free time. FROZEN!

    • I believe if memory serves me the original trust that the girls blew through was from their Grandfather. They inherited a lot more money albeit (2.5 Billion split 7 ways) when their father died. It is unknown if that was held in trust or inherited outright. They could be in control of those funds without any trustees. I mean where else do you find the money to buy a private island in FIJI and a hotel in the South of France?.

      Edgar Bronfman SR died 12/21/2013, Kristin Keeffe left NXIVM shortly thereafter but I don’t think she discussed how that inheritance would come to the girls in that phone call. And it very well could have been changed after Barb Bouchey left in 2009 by EB SR.

  • Although the conceptual purpose of requiring those who are accused of crimes to post bail is to ensure that they’ll show up for future court appearances, many believe that the system has devolved into a modern day form of debtor’s prison. In Rikers Island prison, for example, 80% of the prisoners are there because they could not afford to post bail. Most of them will languish there for months or even years before they go to trial. It’s not at all unusual for prisoners there to end up with “time served” sentences.

    Raniere was, IMHO, appropriately denied bail for two reasons: he’s a danger to the community and he’s a flight risk (Hiding in Mexico was a pretty dumb idea). I think the feds could have made the same case for Allison but chose not to because her attorneys have apparently indicated that she’d like to work out a plea deal.

    As for Clare, I think she is also dangerous and a flight risk. And, given her mental state, I doubt very much that she’s going to be willing to take a plea deal that doesn’t include freedom for her Vanguard.

    So, when Clare gets indicted, it will be interesting to see how the feds handle her application for bail. My guess: $10 million cash, home confinement and an ankle monitor.

  • A few people still in DOS have told me that Clare does fully believe she’s above the law saying that the authorities are incompetent fools and that they’ll never arrest her and that she’s got the best lawyers money can buy which will keep her out of jail. Clare doesn’t realize how much trouble she is in and ultimately if the USA wants to get you, they will get you. The other side is she’d probably be happy to be arrested as she will feel it’s for the cause and consider herself a martyr. Maybe she will get her wish.

    • Keith Raniere didn’t think they would arrest him either.

      Clare needs to study history closer.

      Look at Martha Stewart, she is way more famous and had a lot more money and she went to jail. She was sentenced to prison after being charged on nine counts relating to insider trading on her company’s stocks; with obstruction of justice and securities fraud among them.

      How about Bernie Madoff? He had a ton of money and he still went to jail.

      Tim Allen, of Home Improvement fame, served two years and four months for drug trafficking in 1978

      Then there is Robert Downey Jr. He went to prison

      Teresa Giudice, In 2014, The Housewives Of New Jersey star served 11 months for tax fraud. They could get Clare just on this charge with enough digging.

      Wesley Snipes, who has starred in a number of films including Blade and White Men Can’t Jump, served more than two years for tax evasion.

      Christian Slater, had an usual run-in with the law on account of DUI in 1989. However, his sensational arrest happened in 1997 when he assaulted his then girlfriend and a police officer, while in a drugs-and-alcohol fueled state. Later in 2005, he was arrested again for sexually harassing a woman on the street in Manhattan.

      Mike Tyson, Among his several controversies, the one that took him to prison was the rape case filed in 1991. Throughout the trial, Tyson maintained that it was consensual sex, but the jury thought otherwise. The other offense that landed him in jail was the ubiquitous DUI.

      Samuel B. Kent was the first federal judge in the US to be charged with sexual crimes. In 2009, Judge Kent was sentenced to 33 months in prison for having lied to investigators about sexually abusing two female employees. Even after the scandal broke, Judge Kent offered to retire instead of resign, with a view to keep receiving his salary. The leaders of the House Judiciary Committee ordered him to resign, or face impeachment, causing Judge Kent to finally comply.

    • HAHAHahahah…no doubt! She always looked 10yrs older than her age. And when I met her, her skin looked almost green. Sickly.

      • That is so weird, because I noticed her off-colour, too. I didn’t know if she had been drinking too much colloidal silver, or what. At the time, I thought it was ashen, but you saying green, I think you are absolutely right. It was more green than gray.

      • Evil prematurely ages people. I hope to God the FBI knows what they’re doing and there’s a reason the Bronfmans aren’t in prison right now.

        • It may be the nutrition. Or maybe she has TB or Hepatitis. Remember, they grew up in Africa.

  • If I were her and had her money i’d Have my primary home in St. Petersberg, Russia and buy a luxury hi rise condo in Moscow for weekend events and dinner parties.

    Russia has become a pretty nice place in general if you have a lot of money.

    • Yeah, but there’s a bunch of MOBSTERS in Moscow. They’re called POLICE. And then FSB would probably assign someone to monitor her.

      • Cults have to go to Siberia. It’s the only place they are allowed.

        Vissarion and Raniere look a lot alike, actually.

      • I don’t ageee. America’s most famous Nazi sympathizer, David Duke, from Louisiana went there when the Feds wanted to lock him up for illegal campaign money. Not only did the Russians welcome him, he made a decent living there and even negotiated a deal on the charges where he did no jail time. I still go with St. Pete and the hi rise.

  • This is an interesting question, because of the bail factors for pre-trial release.

    At this point, there is no direct evidence that Clare participated in the branding. However, there is alot of circumstantial evidence of financial crimes.

    So, do the financial crimes plus ability to flee outweigh the lack of dangerousness and no prior criminal history?

    I would guess that Clare does get bail, but it may be under house arrest with armed guard (ala Madoff) because Clare doesn’t have the criminal history or dangerousness.

    What do you all think?

    • If stupidity were a crime, Claire would be sentenced to life without parole. We do know she is probably guilty of witness intimidation (the letters impersonating a Mexican attorney ) , money laundering, visa fraud, income tax evasion. She had committed perjury on the stand in prior cases but that wont come into play here. However, there is also the issues of her very own personal assistants and rainbow nannies that she actually may have hired here in the states (not Sara) over the years being forced to take NXIVM courses and work off their tuition and then deducting it on said tax returns as a scholarship etc. – So forced labor perhaps too? She may still get nailed on sex-trafficking charges even though she was not a known member of DOS if she had access to that dropbox account and then there are “THOSE EMAILS” the contents which shall be revealed.

      Mark the date. 05/28/2018 is supposed to be the nuptials of Ben X Myers and Michelle Salzman. That is not quite a month out of Raniere’s and Mack’s last hearing. Perhaps this will be a wedding that will go down in the history books for the arrests made.

      • Good analysis. Do you think Nefarious Nancy will show up for Michelle’s wedding? As far as I know, no one has seen her.

        I can research on my end the charitable contributions. Clare may have donated to non-existent 501(c)(3) charities, or to NXIVM charities that were just fronts for Vanguard’s bank account. That is VERY ILLEGAL and DEFINITELY FROWNED UPON by the IRS. Dang. What a Scam!!!

        So, it was fraud on both sides. Clare would characterize her payment as a charitable contribution (to get the write-off), then NXIVM-affiliated entity would accept the money as a donation, so to avoid paying taxes on it or reporting it. Dang.

        • There are so many possible scenarios. If I were one half of the Michelle and Ben duo, I would elope. However, we are not talking about people who think they are doing anything wrong and they all suffer from hubris which will be their Achilles heel. (NOTE TO CLARE: I am also talking about you, I know that is a big word for someone who never graduated high school but look it up). IMHO, I think the wedding may go on and if additional arrests have not happened by then, the FEDS see who shows up at the wedding, monitors the wedding and then the new arrests happen shortly thereafter. They have a lot to go thru from those raids but as we have already seen, they are able to process evidence pretty quickly.

          Will Nancy flip?. IMHO she is the more likely Salzman to do so vs Lauren, Director of Education for NXIVM who appears to be able to out EM her mother. Nancy, do you really want to spend your golden years in the clink?

          This may be a Memorial Day for the ages at least in Clifton Park/Halfmoon. If anyone knows where the nuptials are scheduled to take place, please share 🙂

      • Agree,The main issue is her Leona Hemsley-like attitude to fiduciary transparency, but there is a case for Peonage as has appeared on the other indictments. She personally ran Nicki Clyne like a maid-of-all-work, at the very least.

    • The illegal experimentation conducted by (the formerly) Dr. Porter was allegedly directed by, and definitely funded by, Clare Bronfman.

      That is what she would be locked up for. Also, using her private jet to funnel cash to the US from Mexico. Anything she has done to destroy evidence relative to the ongoing investigation. Any assistance she has provided bringing illegal aliens into the country for Rainbow Cultural Garden. Any money laundering and tax violations since she was COO of NXIVM.

      There is likely a lot more than we know about that the prosecutors already do.

  • Her ego / arrogance will keep her from fleeing.

    Just like everybody involved with NXIVM, she believes what she is doing is right and that just by being involved (let alone running the place), she is automatically superior to everyone.

    I think the only way she would flee is if she were somehow allowed to be out between conviction and sentencing. I never never understand why the courts allow that to happen, but it happens more often than people realise.

      • Yeah but… Clare has loads of $$$$ and remember her Dad was Prez of World Jewish Congress and donated $$$ and political influence to form Israel.

        • Unlike Fiji (which basically has the exact same extradition as Israel), it is not that easy to buy extradition protection in Israel.

          They are not going to stick their next out in a way that could possibly make Jewish people look bad for someone who isn’t even Jewish, regardless of who their father was.

          The only way I would think there could be any risk whatsoever of Israel protecting Clare or Sara is if Edgar Jr. or one of the other half-brothers gets involved.

          They know they have no chance whatsoever in Israel.

          It makes a lot of sense that Clare bought the island in Fiji as an extradition insurance policy.

    • Would you please stop posting your Jew-hating crap? There is no place for this here. We are pursuing a non-Jewish Monster / enslaver of women – all stripes, colors, sizes and religions. Some of your posts have been nothing short of vile! I don’t mean to be ugly, but please stop!

  • Very few nations lack extradition agreements withe United States.
    Most of the countries lacking such agreements are poverty stricken countries in sub-Saharan Africa.

    The most prominent nations lacking such treaties are North Korea, Iran, China and Russia
    Would Clare Bronfman look fetching in a burqa?

    That said, in the past US agents have been known to kidnap defendants and return them to US jurisdiction.
    And US courts allow defendants to be kidnapped from foreign nations for trial in the United State.
    What’s Fiji going to do about it?
    Start World War 3?

    504 U.S. 655 (112 S.Ct. 2188, 119 L.Ed.2d 441)

    UNITED STATES, Petitioner v. Humberto ALVAREZ-MACHAIN.

    No. 91-712.
    Held: The fact of respondent’s forcible abduction does not prohibit his trial in a United States court for violations of this country’s criminal laws.

    • “That said, in the past US agents have been known to kidnap defendants and return them to US jurisdiction.”

      shadowstate1958, can you give us some exemples? The Mossad did it a lot with the nazis, remember Klaus Barbie? But with the US, I’m not sure. Edward Snowden is still in Russia by the way…

      The idea that Clare could find some refugee in Israel is very unlikely: her porwerful father is dead, and Israel is a close friend of USA.

      • This list of examples is incredibly long. Here is an article with several examples:


        Italy convicted 23 Americans in connection with kidnapping a muslim cleric in Milan.

        In fact, the Supreme Court has announced it is legal.

        United States v. Alvarez-Machain, 504 U.S. 655 (1992), was a United States Supreme Court case in which the Court held that the fact of respondent’s forcible abduction does not prohibit his trial in a United States court for violations of this country’s criminal laws. It re-confirmed the Ker-Frisbie Doctrine established in Ker v. Illinois (1886) and Frisbie v. Collins (1952).

        United States v. Toscanino is another case.

        They like to allege agents are acting ultra vires, but then go ahead and prosecute anyhow, since, oh well, they already have the defendant.

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.” In addition, he was credited in the Starz docuseries 'Seduced' for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

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 premieres on May 22, 2022.

IMDb — Frank Parlato


Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083
Email: frankparlato@gmail.com