Bronfman lawyer’s argument against home arrest for Clare Bronfman

Clare Bronfman

Susan Necheles – one of Clare Bronfman’s lawyers – has argued eloquently to the court against Clare being under House Arrest.

She wrote in part:

“[T]he other defendants in this case who, like Ms. Bronfman, were not charged with sex trafficking or forced labor, were not subjected to home [arrest]. Ms. Bronfman should not be treated differently due to her wealth. … And, in fact, criminal defendants with similarly large net worth’s (and facing more serious charges) have been released without home incarceration. …

“Ms. Bronfman is not accused of any violence or tampering with witnesses. And, as discussed above, she is not a flight risk. As such, home detention would not be tailored to the minimal risk she poses. … Finally, while electronic monitoring exists that could track Ms. Bronfman without subjecting her to home confinement, we do not believe, for the reasons discussed above, that it is necessary in this case to prevent her from fleeing…. Wherefore, this Court should release Ms. Bronfman under the proposed bail conditions. “

Once the bail package is completed with appropriate liens etc., the judge will decide whether to grant Clare the ability to leave her home freely and be able to speak with NXIVM members.

Necheles made more points for Clare to be unencumbered:

“Ms. Bronfman poses no danger to ‘any other person or the community.’ She has no prior convictions and has never been accused of any sort of violence. Nor is she alleged to have played any role in the entity DOS. The only ‘harassment’ the government alleges Ms. Bronfman ever participated in was allegedly using ‘abusive litigation’ to ‘intimidate and attack perceived enemies and critics of Raniere.’ But litigation tactics, regardless of how aggressive they may be, are surely not the type of danger the Bail Reform Act is intended to prevent against….

“[A]t …  the time of the arrest of Keith Raniere, Ms. Bronfman has known that she is under investigation and facing arrest. For example, at the bail hearing for Raniere, the prosecution said that Ms. Bronfman ‘is a person who the government does believe has acted as a co-conspirator in criminal activity with [Raniere].’ …  Nevertheless, Ms. Bronfman voluntarily returned to the United States from Mexico after Raniere was arrested. Moreover, during the period between Raniere’s arrest and today, she has twice travelled to Europe (after informing the U.S. Attorney’s Office of her travel plans) and then returned to the United States. In addition, Ms. Bronfman, understanding that she was likely to be indicted, rented an apartment in Manhattan, so that she could live in this area—close to her attorneys—while she prepared for trial. Relatedly, Ms. Bronfman’s attorneys had asked the government, prior to her arrest, that she be given the opportunity to voluntarily surrender. On the day of her arrest, the prosecutor emailed undersigned counsel and asked that they contact the prosecutor immediately. We did so before 7 a.m. and were told that Ms. Bronfman had been indicted and should surrender that day. Ms. Bronfman, voluntarily, did so. Simply put, Ms. Bronfman ‘has not seized upon previous opportunities to flee to avoid prosecution or incarceration, and the opportunities have been many.’ ….. This is a powerful factor, we submit, showing that Ms. Bronfman has no intention of fleeing in this case.”

Necheles also discussed that Bornfman’;s foreign assets and ties to other countries there could be no incentive for her to flee to those countries.

“[W]hile Ms. Bronfman does have significant foreign ties, including family members in England and France and property in Fiji, there is no realistic possibility that she would manage to flee to any of these countries. The only country where she is a citizen is the United States. And she has already surrendered her passport to the Probation Department. Moreover, each of the three foreign countries to which she has ties have extradition treaties with the United States. Even if she were to flee to any of them, therefore, she would be extradited back to the United States. Courts have recognized that the existence of extradition treaties is a significant factor in determining whether the proposed bail conditions will reasonably assure a defendant’s appearance.”

On August 21, or soon thereafter, we will learn if Clare Bronfman will continue to be under house arrest and wear an ankle monitor.



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  • She even ‘controlled’ her arrest. Attempted to undermine the importance and severity of it by ‘surrendering’ on her terms: apartment rented near attorneys, preparing for trial etc.

    Her blithe contempt for the law, her unassailable confidence that the law is her servant because, to a very real extent, it has been, should not be encouraged by leniency. She has terrorised many, and posed a terrible omnipotent threat to many. She should be kept under strict control.

  • Clare’s attorney’s arguments are really just common sense stuff that any attorney would argue.

    I can definitely see the judge letting her off home confinement if all of her pledged assets have the proper liens on them by August 21. It’s certainly very possible, especially seeing how leniently he treated Lauren.

    But I don’t think he’ll let her remove the ankle bracelet, since her lawyer’s argument for that request is basically that Clare has no motivation to flee any longer because her family would be left “destitute” —- and since she already turned herself in, this fact supposedly proves she’d never flee (which is not a well reasoned argument).

    1) Clare’s mother and brother in law would not be left “destitute” if she fled, since Clare’s sister probably has a net worth around $300M-$400 million dollars at least, and if her mom or husband had to forfeit a few small assets (to the court) then Sara could easily replace those assets by snapping her fingers while eating a bowl of Cocoa Puffs. So I don’t think that argument is a logical one that the judge will accept. In fact, it’s probably why Sara herself didn’t want to personally guarantee the bond with her own assets.

    2) While the fact that Clare turned herself in weighs slightly in the direction of her not fleeing, the truth is that Clare has no reason to flee *right now* since the trial isn’t happening until 2019. Once the trial begins and Clare can judge how the jury is reacting to the government’s evidence (once she can judge whether she’s likely to be convicted or not) her reasons to flee could become much more immediate, especially if her case isn’t going well and she senses that she’ll soon be taken to federal prison for up to 5 years. While I agree that 5 years isn’t nearly as frightening as 15 years, being locked in a cage with lots of smelly women and eating baloney sandwiches for 5 years might not seem palatable to a woman who’s been pampered 24/7 since birth. Only then would the judge be thankful that he didn’t remove her ankle bracelet.

    3) While her lawyer argues that the Bail Reform Act wasn’t intended to cover the type of abusive litigation that Clare has engaged in, I think that the government will argue that *any* action taken with the *specific intent* to silence potential witnesses against her will be appropriate for the judge to consider. The fact that she sent email spreadsheets to Keith with lists containing the personal information of people that have wronged them (which included a Jane Doe witness) is also proof of her neverending attempt to silence, harass or intimidate people that the court should consider, since it goes to her personality of neverending harassment of perceived enemies.

    4) I hope the judge orders that her sister Sara can’t fund anybody else on Clare’s behalf during her bail period, since otherwise the restrictions on her finances are meaningless. If Clare wants to fund somebody or something that the judge has forbidden the trust from paying for, then Sara could just fund those things herself (with a gift or loan to 3rd parties at Clare’s request) and the judge’s bail rules would be mocked. I hope the judge tells Clare that he’ll revoke her bail if he sees any evidence of Sara doing anything like that on her behalf.

    • Clarification: I realize that Sara has partially guaranteed the bail bond with some of her ‘small’ property assets in the USA.

      But those assets can easily be replaced by snapping her fingers —- regardless of whether they are owned by her, her husband or her mom. It’s a joke. Nobody would be left destitute.

      AFAIK, Sara has not personally guaranteed the entire $100 Million dollar bond with her own extensive net worth. That’s the basis of my previous comment stating that she didn’t want to “personally guarantee” the bail bond with her own assets.

      Putting up a few houses is not guaranteeing the entire bond, it’s just tip money for somebody like her.

  • The other defendants can’t afford to flee to Texas much less another country and she can easily double or triple mom’s and Basit’s losses. Although I seriously doubt she would leave her Vanguard unless he told her to flee or it benefited poor gentle misunderstood Keith. She makes me ill.

  • I agree with her lawyer, Clare should not be treated any different just because she’s rich. Put her in jail just like Keith. She is the mastermind financial source for NXIVM operations and lawsuits against critics. He would have been toothless without her financial support.

  • Ok there Sclairecrow, we are going to make you a deal. Stay in Brooklyn, do hard labor in Leavenworth, or face the unknown in North Korea.

  • I think the one factor that may carry the most weight will be the extent of the indictments. The charges against Bronfman just do not match those against Raniere and Mack. In purely legal terms, I see this argument, but context is important. The home arrest arrangement for Mack was to both protect women in DOS (who might come out) and for Mack’s own good (keep her from NXIVM). In Bronfman’s case, it’s easy to imagine her violating the order prohibiting contact with members of NXIVM and exerting pressure on potential witnesses. Of course, if someone changes their mind about the cult, then it would not be hard to catch Bronfman violating those terms.

    I hope the prosecution has some evidence in its rebuttal to suggest the distinct prospect of witness tampering.

  • Where is it that Clare wants to go so badly? Clifton Park, perhaps Mexico? Does she have cash stashed somewhere she needs to pick up? I suppose since her lawyer said Clare does not own a private plane, she flew economy to Europe on her recent trips?

    • Of course there’s money stashed, probably several places. This is a group that chose not to pay U S taxes many times over the years. Where has all the large sums earned from Nxivm courses, all the rich women that were fleeced, the illegal enterprises. Bronfman pays for everything. These people have a plan. Keith hasn’t bought so much as a shirt for himself on his zero income according to himself.

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.

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