Lawsuit alleges Raniere’s prison is so bad – it’s not fit for man nor Vanguard

Not a real photo of Keith Raniere but his soon-to-be future reality.. Prison

Pedro Espada, the former NY State Senator who, convicted on felony charges, spent time in Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center [MDC], is, with five other white collar convicts, suing the US government for the filthy and inhumane conditions of this grotesque and medieval torture chamber that is euphemistically called a federal detention center.

Keith Raniere is presently an inmate there – being held without bail in the pre-trial detention section of the prison.

Espada and his co-plaintiffs are suing to change conditions at MDC – which, they say, violate American prisoners’ rights against cruel and unusual punishment.

From what I heard from former inmates, this appears to be a meritorious lawsuit. If any zoo in America were as cruel to monkeys or lions as MDC is to human prisoners, there would be intense public outrage. It is not known if Raniere will join in the lawsuit  against the facility but he does have quite a history of suing people who he has defined as his enemies.

There is in this otherwise humorless story of a savage American prison system, a touch of irony as it relates to Raniere.

While MDC is bitterly destructive to the health and well-being of the human beings housed there [all wane in health from the day they arrive], Raniere’s abusive treatment of DOS slaves — with starvation diets, sleep deprivation, forced sex and excessive requirements to jog — was, in a sense, a form of human torture that resulted in a similar decline of health to what is being experienced by prisoners at MDC, including Raniere.

The lawsuit contends the facility – which mostly houses prisoners with pending cases – is “effectively a high-security prison”.  There is no sunlight. No fresh air. It has “the constant presence of airborne fecal matter, mold, asbestos and other unknown particulate matter.”

At MDC, the food is also extremely low-quality — and, according to the lawsuit, very unhealthy. The preparation areas at MDC “are habitually contaminated by the visible presence and droppings of rats, mice, cockroaches and flies” which often end up in the meals of prisoners.

My MDC source tells me Raniere personally finds the food abhorrent. He is having great difficulty with the food there — which, again, is ironic since he punished so many women over their food and their attachment to food.

The lawsuit also alleges that the medical care at MDC – if provided at all – is administered in places filled with vermin droppings. Raniere recently had to spend some days in the MDC clinic – according to my source – because of high-blood pressure.

It is sad to ponder which is more dirty – his prison cell, the clinic there, or his sex lair on Hale Drive prior to Kathy Russell cleaning it up of course. Hmmm…I wonder if the Feds would let Kathy into MDC to clean up any of the areas that are frequented by Raniere. Not to worry, she may be there on her own soon enough.

According to the lawsuit, corrections staff would often say prisoners were “faking” sicknesses and give scant attention to their complaints.  Some at MDC reportedly believed Raniere artificially raised his high blood pressure by obtaining one or more of the contraband substances that are available in prison.  Raniere has a long history of hypochondria – and often told close followers such as Barb Jeske and Pam Cafritz that he was a death’s door and would die soon.

On June 12, Raniere made an appearance in court. Some said he looked red in the face. At least one observer thought he looked like a chipmunk.

Behind those walls lie stench and filth and horror – no, I don’t mean Vanguard, I am referring to the putrid, fetid conditions of this ‘third world” style prison.

One plaintiff in the lawsuit, David Crespo, 63, said jail staff insisted on performing a colonoscopy in the Special Housing Unit, which isolates inmates as punishment or for protection. Crespo cancelled the procedure, but was still kept in solitary confinement for three days.

A joke once made the rounds – among anti-Raniere people – that when doing a colonoscopy on Raniere, the doctor was not sure which orifice to examine since there was an abundance of shit coming out of his mouth.

All kidding aside – MDC is not fit for a Vanguard, let alone human beings. Not a one of us would put our cats or dogs there.

And when you consider that most of the people who are incarcerated there are simply waiting to go to trial [they haven’t been convicted of anything yet and are presumed innocent], you realize just how unfair it is for the Feds to house them there. This is cruel and unusual punishment and one wonders how Americans tolerate such barbaric conditions imposed on fellow human beings.  Only a psychopath or a Vanguard would wish to see this kind of thing done to his enemies — and in Vanguard’s case, maybe even his followers.

“This is an important lawsuit to bring the prison conditions for minimum security sentenced prisoners up to basic, Eighth Amendment constitutional standards that everyone is entitled to in America, regardless of their underlying crimes, and to compensate inmates whose rights have been violated,” said attorney Eric Hochstadt, who’s taken the case pro bono.

The Bureau of Prisons declined comment.

A June 2016 report by the National Association of Women Judges faulted MDC’s lack of sunlight, fresh air and medical services.



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Frank Parlato

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John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
5 years ago

With all due respect to Frank…

Although MDC may be below the standards of America’s best prisons, it’s not even close to being as ‘inhumane’ as this lawsuit claims.

MDC is a ‘resort’ compared to truly bad prisons.

The problem is that too many Americans have become TENDERFOOT PUSSIES and don’t know shit about real prisons.

You think MDC is bad? Try Lurigancho prison, you pussies.

Yeah, I do watch episodes of “Locked Up Abroad”.

There are HUNDREDS of other South American prisons which are nearly as bad as Lurigancho was (I say ‘was’ because I think they recently closed Lurigancho).

You pussies want some facts? Okay, here are some facts:

Fact #1) Many of these South American prisons don’t even have guards on the inside because it’s too dangerous for guards to enter the inner part of the prison (the guards will only enter for brief periods, then leave).

Fact #2) The guards of these prisons are stationed along the outer perimeter… keep everybody inside. Whatever happens inside, stays inside (e.g. whatever happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas)

Fact #3) Inmates are not guaranteed food, water or even shelter.

Fact #4) The food is passed from the guards to the senior inmate gang leaders… a special meeting area (kinda like the DMZ in Korea).

Fact #5) The prisoners must then “cut deals” with the gang leaders for their food, including paying for it with money or other favors.

Fact #6) Beds and sleeping rooms are owned by gang leaders and must be ‘bought’ just like food, using either money or favors. Yeah, that’s right, if you want to sleep on a urine infested mattress that stinks to high heaven, you have to pay for that privilege. If you’ve got no money, you’ll have to sleep on the cement floor brushed up against 50 other poor inmates who all have B.O. and stinky feet.

Fact #7) These prisons allow guns to be purchased on the black market just like drugs, with some inmates walking around freely with guns and sometimes even grenades. Everybody has knives…..and I don’t mean crappy homemade shanks from American prisons, I’m talking about real knives like Cuisinart 12-inch mini swords. LOL

Fact #8) Each building is often like a little country. When the building you live in gets threatened by the inmates of a neighboring building…….the 2 buildings sometimes “go to war” and not everybody survives, LOL. The guards stay out of it. If you win the war or sign a peace treaty on favorable terms, you might get some ‘booty’ (valuables from the other building) to add to your coffers, kinda like medieval Europe.

Fact #8) You think MDC is filthy? Try South American prisons. They are filthy beyond all description. They’ve got cockroaches the size of rats. They’ve got rats the size of newborn baby elephants. They’ve got mosquitoes the size of small hummingbirds. LOL. Plus they have diseases floating around that haven’t been seen in North America since the days of Christopher Columbus, LOL.

You think MDC is bad? Try South American prisons. Fuck this lawsuit. MDC is a resort.

What about the presumption of innocence? What about treating people fairly BEFORE they’ve been convicted of a real crime?

Well, any time they serve “pre-trial” is credited against the time they’re given after conviction.

So WHY should they get ‘credited’ with pre-trial time IF it’s just PUSSY TIME served at some DISNEYLAND RESORT facility?

*But what if they’re acquitted at trial and not given any time?

Well, that’s just tough shit cuz the world ain’t a fair place.

Guess what? Kids are starving right now and yet you people aren’t doing SHIT to help feed them, are you?

That’s not fair either, but shit happens.

Have a nice day. 🙂 🙂

John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
5 years ago

Obviously not every South American prison has the ‘exact’ same conditions. I wasn’t implying that.

Some of them have guards that enter the inner prison more often than others, to lock people in cages each night, etc.

But each South American prison is 100 times worse than life at “resort MDC”. 🙂

5 years ago

Nope, not letting it slide…..

It’s 2018, and while you may be wearing a bright red MAGA hat and busy wishing for the good ole days when black folk had to ride in the back of the bus and women kept house and made casseroles with Ritz crackers, you can keep your sexist fucking insult of calling weak men pussies to the comments on Breitbart or whatever dark corner of the internet you crawled out of.

Before Raniere’s arrest and the draw of attention to this site the comments were on point about the topic and no one dragged their politics in the discussions. However, once a few alt-right, Trump loving asshats found a message board they could dominate- voila; agro, shit stirring hate out of the blue on democrats, which I’m not, trolling *snowflakes*, and the inevitable sexism and sarcasm that drives off the non-confrontational.

Mr. Parlato, part of the reason that I have raised concern over your post about an alleged NXIVM mixer is that it is not only completely dubious, but it’s like you’re chumming the water for sharks for the rest of your readership with the alt-right red meat that conspiracy consists of.

If one of the goals of this site is to provide truthful information to help former NXIVM members deal with the truth about NXIVM and Raniere, as well as educate the general public, the rude, agro alt-right bullshit of hijacking the comments section, shoving their politics, rank with sexist and aurthoritarian overtones and insults, front and center and then conflating it well beyond any reasonable probability with current or past events and actions, has got to stop.

The values we all hold, not our individual politics, is what led us here- the belief that individuals are sovereign and outrage over Raniere’s manipulation, of women in particular, that violate that sovereignty, that there are bad actors on both sides of the neocon coin who render biased, inept government, outrage at the trafficking of vulnerable forgone nationals, theft; these are issues of character and integrity not a particular political flavor.

My experience is that when alt-right snowflake melters find a comment section or board populated with adults that they can hijack with their ick and no one confronts them or moderates early on, the bluster, seism and racism just ramps up.

I come here because it is the best place to get info about NXIVM’s downfall and Raniere’s comeuppance. And before this alt-right crap the comments often provided additional insight from former members. Now, I dither back and forth about wether or not to check in because I, and other’s who’ve complain- I mean, this shit is not particularly uplifting, and I just don’t want a side order of agro, authoritarian sexism smacking me in the face in the comments section.

So, Mr. Schmidt and other dick swingers- kindly put it back in your pants and act like your a guest at someone’s house and not a frat party, there are other adults in the room with you.

For starters, next time, don’t compare weak men to women’s vaginas. And my ovaries are way bigger than your balls. I work with survivors of sexual assault which a number of women involved with NXIVM are; and I can with certainty that alt-right agro and sexist posts and commentary are divisive at best and more often that not triggery for trauma survivors with the resonance of authoritarian brutishness.

Please, let civility reign, not malice, misogyny or divisiveness, it’s time to be Indivisible again.

5 years ago

We all share the blame for this tragedy.

Scott Johnson (@ScottTexJohnson)
Reply to  Anonymous

Speak for yourself. I don’t share any of the blame.

5 years ago


orangecountydreams - OCD
orangecountydreams - OCD
5 years ago

I agree people are innocent until proven guilty. And conditions should not be abhorrent for those awaiting trial. But when I look at the women KR starved and abused (sleep deprivation, at a minimum), I do not feel badly in this case. If you care about a person – anyone – you want them fed, rested and sheltered. KR did not care about any of that. Human beings are disposable for his goals, a la an earlier post.

5 years ago


5 years ago

Pfft. Has Keith been issued a mandatory branding near his genitals?? If not, then he has nothing to complain about!

Scott Johnson (@ScottTexJohnson)

The National Association of WOMEN Judges? Are any of them skinny? Young? Can Raniere meet them and hypnotize them? Oh the irony. LOL

5 years ago

Keith simoly made an ethical breach, you can think of his imprisionment at MDC as being grounded.

Favorite piece of sarcasm yet...
Favorite piece of sarcasm yet...
5 years ago

“If any zoo in America were as cruel to monkeys or lions as MDC is to human prisoners, there would be intense public outrage.“

Especially in light of all the crimes the monkeys and lions have committed to deserve being locked up! Haha
This is brilliant writing. 😂😂😂

5 years ago

Lets all have a pity party.

Python Swoope
Python Swoope
5 years ago

Who needs “sunlight” when you are the “smartest man in the World”

Scott Johnson (@ScottTexJohnson)
Reply to  Python Swoope

One would think the smartest man in the world would have escaped from jail by now.

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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