More details on defendants Bronfman, Salzman & Salzman and hapless Kathy Russell

Clare Bronfman

From the Albany Times Union we learn — Federal prosecutors asked US Magistrate Judge Daniel Stewart to set bond for [Kathy] Russell at $50,000, but he lowered it to $25,000 at the request of her attorney, William Fanciullo.

Fanciullo told the judge that Russell had very little cash, a car worth about $8,000 and no assets. Of course this is true – she was a member of NXIVM and took Executive Success Programs-  so, of course, she is poor.

He said she lives in a Clifton Park apartment.

“She is a 60-year-old woman,” Fanciullo told the judge. “She has next to no money. … Her release poses no danger to anyone or to the community.”

But prosecutors disagreed. They said Russell, who has an accounting background, is known for her ability to travel long distances and helped commit identity theft and aiding in an illegal border crossing.

She’s a wily woman – they said.

My take on Kathy is she is there with the much more guilty defendants because her name was on a lot of things [I warned her that Keith was setting her up for the fall] and also because, as a low level, low paid, bookkeeper, she could turn easily enough and help the prosecution. She is not much of a gain to the feds – except of course if she flips.

Which she likely will.

Which reminds me that Karen Unterreiner was not arrested today. This suggests she is either cooperating with the Feds or that more arrests are coming. Indeed, Kathy Russell worked for Karen and did what Karen told her to do.

In this respect, Karen is far more guilty than Kathy.  Why has she not been charged and only Kathy?

The prosecutors said Kathy took part in a scheme to help obtain computer usernames and passwords of people “believed to be NXIVM enemies,” prosecutors said. But so did Karen.

So, my hope is that Karen has flipped.

As for the Salzmans — it looks like Lauren will enjoy the night at the Rensselaer County jail. The judge agreed to her release on $5 million bond. Her grandparents — traveling from New Jersey to Albany – still have to post $50,000 in cash to secure the bond for the enthusiastic NXIVM leader who was in charge of the cult’s education programs.

Evidently the arrangements could not all be made by the time the clerk left for the day.

Lauren’s mother, Nancy Salzman, was to be released on bail pending execution of a $5 million surety bond that was to be signed by her parents and a friend, Capital Region resident David Messing.

David Messing may be a relative of Steve Messing, a dentist, who is a long time friend of Nancy Salzman.

We do not know if Nancy was released. She may be also in jail – starting with tonight.

Both of the women will have to be in Brooklyn tomorrow and the question is – how will they get there – by their own conveyance – or in handcuffed and shackled and escorted by US Marshals.

Russell remains in federal custody – being at the moment unable to make bail – and will likely appear tomorrow in cuffs in Brooklyn?

Today, she appeared in court looking gaunt and tired and frankly, old. Her chances of becoming the Prima Donna for a major ballet company – as her Vanguard, Keith Raniere, promised – seems to have evaporated – and while everyone else but her knew it in the past, the look on Kathy’s face today signaled that she too knows that her Vanguard will be unable to deliver her ballerina break through fame she so coveted at age 60.

All the defendants were described as “flight risks” by federal authorities, and if they make bail – all of them will be on home detention and electronic monitoring – and that includes the woman referred to by some as Legatus, the sinister and brutal Clare Bronfman.

A joyless Clare Bronfman leaves federal court today.  (Jesse Ward for New York Daily News).


According to the Times Union, “Lauren Salzman’s alleged crimes include trafficking a victim for forced labor, including helping facilitate the captivity of a Mexican woman who was Raniere’s sexual partner; the woman was allegedly locked in an apartment [at 12 Wilton Court] for more than a year [18 months] as punishment for showing interest in another man [Ben Meyers].

By the way, Ben Meyers and his wife, Michelle Salzman, were seen in court today in Albany to watch Nancy and Lauren reap the fulsome benefits of Executive Success Programs.

Ben – who may yet be indicted – was the amorous object of the unfortunate woman imprisoned by Raniere. Passive Ben was willing to give up the woman and accept instead Michelle Salzman – sister of Lauren and daughter of Nancy – who had been rejected as “unworthy” by Raniere.

Prosecutors said Lauren Salzman was a “first line master” in the DOS slave-master group and led efforts to disseminate misinformation about the secret group to discredit victims who defected.

Lying was her middle name.

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Frank Parlato


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  • I see Clare still looks super skinny. Good – she is the monster enforcer. I hope she enjoys bologna. I hear it grows on you when you have no other choices. I wonder if Clare feels bad for smashing people into mud puddles in the name of her boy toy. Karen – I hope Karen has flipped – maybe she was apart from all the nefarious activities. One can only hope.

    I slept at 3 Flintllock Lane in the early 90’s (as a vendor) when it all seem so innocuous – a guy house-sharing with three ladies. So what? Keith was charming, gracious and funny, Well, there was much beneath the surface. KR, you fucking MONSTER. You escalated beyond reason. If you offered to 99% of men, unlimited sex, money and adoration, they would say, “Hell yeah – Cool !!!”. What the Hell is up with you, Keith, dirtbag??? Nothing is ever enough for your entitled, fat, lazy, manipulative ass. You almost screwed my boss (a genuine, decent person) out of the company he started in 1964. You terrorized, intimidated and bullied innocent people!

    I normally do not take pleasure in anyone’s misfortune, but what we have here is a budding Jim Jones / David Koresh, whose legacy ended in murder.

    There are quite a number of people in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Pennsylvania, who have quite a bit to offer.

    Those of you reading – no, I was not hurt personally. I just have a FUCKING MORAL OBJECTION to all this.

    Anyone can call me privately with info: 512-964-7350. Thank you .

    • I was wonder if you could share anything about how the Austin, TX sect collapsed?

      They were going pretty strong there for a while, and it was my understanding that was one of the first Rainbow Cultural Garden locations.

      • I do not have any info / intel on the Austin Rainbow Cultural Gardens. I had been to a few “convention” type CBI events, in cities outside of Texas. But as far as Texas goes, I was out of the picture shortly after CBI collapsed and my company got bought out. Prior to that I did have contact with Austin area CBI members and for a time they were so gung ho – genuinely nice people. Over time it seemed they became disillusioned and heart broken as the States started coming after the organization.

        I apologize for my over-the-top post above. I just get so angry with bullies. Keith ruined not only bank accounts, but lives – for over 20 years – and he smirked his way through all of it.

  • I’m happy she is preparing herself for jail time getting that smart Bob haircut it cuts down the time ridding one self of head lice. In jail lice are passed more frequently than a doobie at a Willie Nelson concert.

  • Who’s paying for William Fanciullo?

    And, if she is so broke, why did Kathy Russell refuse to waive the identity hearing that now has to be held on Friday in Albany?

    William Fanciullo is going to have to be paid to show up for a useless hearing, unless somebody actually believes they have arrested the wrong Kathy Russell.

  • That picture looks like it should have been a painting of a woman, hanging in a Scottish hunting lodge. In 1870.

  • Claire Bronfman was involved in Nxium as far back as 2003. I remember going to a recruitment meeting in the Bronfman apartment in NYC located at Central Park South

  • Scarecrow has that thousand-yard stare. Looking very gaunt and thinner than ever.

    The identity theft was Keith’s use of Pam’s credit card. Keith would purchase items and services with the card, then pay with the deceased Cafritz’s bank account. Rinse, repeat.

    This was done to avoid paying taxes and so VanGrifter could claim he had no income.

    Oops! That did not work out so well…

      • They are currently being charged with identity theft for Pam Cafrits. I imagine there are numerous crimes that missed the statutes because of the corruption in Albany LE. KR did not take much of a break between his pyramid schemes, anything he’s touched has turned to shit. The escalation makes one wonder where this cult would have gone from here if not finally stopped. Sarah Edmonson needs to be thanked for showing her brand , it pushed Nxivm crimes in a direction that couldn’t be covered up anymore no matter how much bribery was used.

      • From Wikipedia, and the most simplistic explanation I could find of RICO and statute of limitations – “Under RICO, a person who has committed “at least two acts of racketeering activity” drawn from a list of 35 crimes—27 federal crimes and 8 state crimes—within a 10-year period can be charged with racketeering if such acts are related in one of four specified ways to an “enterprise”.[citation needed] Those found guilty of racketeering can be fined up to $25,000 and sentenced to 20 years in prison per racketeering count.[citation needed] In addition, the racketeer must forfeit all ill-gotten gains and interest in any business gained through a pattern of “racketeering activity.”[citation needed]:Under RICO, a person who has committed “at least two acts of racketeering activity” drawn from a list of 35 crimes—27 federal crimes and 8 state crimes—within a 10-year period can be charged with racketeering if such acts are related in one of four specified ways to an “enterprise”.[citation needed] Those found guilty of racketeering can be fined up to $25,000 and sentenced to 20 years in prison per racketeering count.[citation needed] In addition, the racketeer must forfeit all ill-gotten gains and interest in any business gained through a pattern of “racketeering activity.”[citation needed]”

        Apparently it is the pattern of behavior and not so much the actual crimes that make RICO charges easy to prove in a court of law.

  • I remember meeting Kathy Russell all those years ago. My understanding was that she was the mama bear that kept the ship running tight. Didn’t seem at all like a victim to me.

    Kathy Russell must know where a lot of bodies are buried (perhaps literally), and hopefully she is upset enough at being discarded and broke, as well as facing potentially the rest of her life in prison, that she is going to just spill it all.

    Wasn’t Michelle Salzman taking over the bookkeeping from Kathy Russell?

    • If someone like Danielle Roberts can keep a medical licence in NY, how can anybody trust any doctor in that state?

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,_Jr.

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083