It’s great to see the law being used rightly against Keith Raniere just as he misused – with impunity for decades – the law to hurt others.
Many wonder if the judge will let old Vanguard out. Here is an important clue:
The EDNY in their bail opposition papers mentions that their opposition to let Raniere be released from jail on $10 million bail [and security guards] is seconded by the United States Pretrial Services Department for the Eastern District New York.
The fact that Pretrial Services is recommending Raniere not be released is significant. Pretrial is part of the judiciary, not the DOJ. They are supposed to make independent assessments of dangers and risk of flight and not act as a tool for the prosecution. Their recommendations carry weight with judges.
We learn from the DOJ EDNY bail opposition that Raniere was interviewed by Pretrial Services which issued a Report Addendum, dated April 13, 2018, wherein they concluded there were “no conditions or combination of conditions that would reasonably assure [Raniere’s] appearance in court and the safety of the community.”
Pretrial Services concluded Raniere posed a risk of non-appearance and danger based on the “nature of the instant offense”. In other words, the crimes he is charged with are so serious that it automatically militates toward detention.
They also conclude Raniere posed a risk of nonappearance based on his use of “false identifications,” his “ties to a foreign country,” his “unstable” living situation, “potential access to large sums of money,” “undisclosed employment and financial history,” and “unverified social history.”
He is broke, he says
We also learn that Raniere refused to provide employment or financial information to Pretrial Services on the advice of counsel.
Unfortunately for him, Raniere completed a “Financial Affidavit” in the Northern District of Texas, where he was first detained in the USA. In his affidavit, Raniere claimed to be self-employed, to make $0 a month, and claimed to have no “cash on hand or money in savings or checking account.”
When asked if he owned any “real estate, stocks, bonds, notes, automobiles, or other valuable property,” Raniere reported only a 50% interest in a house he estimated to be worth $60,000 on Flintlock Lane in Clifton Park. This modest townhouse is owned jointly by him and long time harem woman Karen Unterreiner.
Raniere also played cute when he included a reference to “Property probate Court from Pamela KFritz.” Maybe he forgot how to spell her name. But the government knew: “The defendant appears to be referring to Pamela Anne Cafritz, described in the defendant’s motion for bail as his ‘deceased long-time significant other.’”
Despite his plea of total poverty [his food, clothes, housing and, most recently, his handcuffs – just magically appear], the prosecution was skeptical. They wrote, “While the defendant portrays himself as a man of few means, he has access to enormous wealth, as evidenced by his instant application to be guarded by armed security personnel, as well as the private and first class air travel, luxury accommodations and other evidence of wealth described in the Initial Letter.”
Gee – when you lie so much, guess it’s hard to keep all those lies straight!