There is a reason why Keith Raniere was able to instill such great fear among his followers – and, even more so, among those who might criticize him. I have been publishing this blog for years and with more 20,000 comments made – only a handful of people have ever dared to give their true names.
Even after Raniere’s arrest, people continue to hide their identities. I don’t blame them. Raniere is a brutal punisher who thinks nothing of destroying peoples’ lives.
And he’s had a huge advantage. He’s had both Bronfman money and Salinas’ family’s ever-present “threat of violence” behind him.
The Bronfman money was used primarily in the US to silence and intimidate enemies. In Mexico, Raniere had only a few enemies out in the open – who dared to speak up – because, in Mexico, they know that not only will they may be criminally charged via a corrupt judge through Emiliano Salinas – but there is the specter of Carlos Salinas actually arranging for their murder.
In Mexico, it is not safe to run afoul of Carlos.
Whether deserved or not – Carlos Salinas is probably the most feared man in Mexico – the man assumed to be the true head of the Mexican Mafia – with its billion-dollar businesses of money laundering, drug sales, human trafficking, gun running – and murder.
It may not be true – but millions believe it. Carlos Salinas is believed to be deadly. And his son, Emiliano, is the head of the Mexican cult of NXIVM. So, in Mexico, people hope to leave NXIVM with their lives – and are silent.
In the USA – which is not quite such a lawless land as Mexico – there is less fear of being assassinated – but there is another fear – another enforcer here – which Raniere used so well to intimidate people who might criticize him.
He used the court system – and the natural advantage in the US courts that accrue to the party with the most money.
Our US legal system is heavily weighted toward the principle that “he who has the most money wins.” Raniere could always outspend his targets.
Even though he rarely won any courtroom victories, he usually was able to ruin his opponents by making them broke defending themselves. And just as often, he used the Bronfmans’ wealth to get his enemies criminally indicted based on false and perjured testimony and falsified documents – which further ruined them and put their lives into hell. For an indictment alone is enough to destroy a person – even if innocent – and it is a hard way out – even if one is acquitted or the charges dismissed.
So Raniere used the legal system to abuse people in the USA, and in the USA, the legal system is ripe for abuse for those who have the money.
As Joe O’Hara pointed out in his lawsuit in 2012 – where he revealed publicly many of the crimes of the Bronfman-Raniere crime organization – Raniere had a set game plan for his litigation abuse.
(1) Multiple causes-of-action;
(2) Onerous and duplicative demands for documents and records;
(3) Extensive motion practice;
(4) Complaints filed with licensing authorities;
(5) Attempts to have criminal charges brought against the opposing party;
(6) Refusal to produce documents and records;
(7) Refusal to produce witnesses;
(8) Perjured testimony;
(9) One or more requests for substitution of counsel;
(10) One or more requests for a change of venue;
(11) Witness intimidation; and
(12) Co-mingling of cases: e.g., using discovery in one case to obtain evidence and information for use in other cases.
These 12 methods were costly in money for both the target and for Raniere. The difference was that Raniere could afford it. He had Bronfman backing – and he had Bronfman perjury as well.
This was an astonishingly successful tool since Clare Bronfman would often take a direct role in the abusive litigation – besides just financing it, she would perform the necessary perjury.
It was a clever tactic since who would think that an enormously wealthy young heiress would be motivated to lie?
There was a presumption of integrity with her since she had [it seemed] no motive to lie. Why would she lie about the location of a computer server or a contract over a million dollars – since she had too much to lose – and after all, she didn’t really need the money.
It backfired like all lies always do. And the chickens have come home to roost for Clare now. Think of the littleness of the crimes she is charged with. Here is a woman with hundreds of millions of dollars who facilitated Keith using Pam Cafrtiz’s American Express card to make some $8,000-$10,000 a month in personal charges.
She could have easily given him that money – without using a dead woman’s credit card illegally – but instead, she committed a federal crime.
Or take her bringing in a woman in from another country – and lying on the visa application, personally signing the visa application document – saying the woman would get a certain salary and then paying the woman that salary and making her illegally kickback some of the payments to her – a few thousand dollars. Why would she do this? She did not need the few thousand. Perhaps she had learned from Keith that she was above the law. Perhaps she was just blindly following Keith – but either way, Clare learned she could get away with breaking the law – and no matter how many people went to the authorities – nothing ever happened – except that some of the whistleblowers [most of them in fact] wound up being charged with some bogus crime.
In all those instances, Clare and Keith had a hand in getting the whistleblower charged.
So they learned that they could cheat and win at the US legal system. They had no fear – and so they never thought they had to abide by the law – they knew they would win in the US system because they had more money than their enemies. So they got more daring and bold and more accustomed to lying. And lying worked in the US legal system – because they had enough money to sell those lies. And when lies alone weren’t enough, they could always produce fake documents.
“She who tells the most lies and has the most money – wins.”
So it came to pass that an emboldened Raniere felt he could set up a scheme to blackmail and brand women. And that helped to undo him. And finally, the Eastern District of NY did what the Northern or the Western District declined to do — investigate Raniere – not his enemies.
Because of that, Raniere is in jail. Clare is under home arrest. Yet, people still do not feel safe.
Sara Bronfman is still at large and I have evidence that she can be just as cruel as her sister – and just as dishonest – although it comes a little less naturally to her than Clare – but make no mistake – she will do it.
And then there is still Emiliano Salinas – out there with his daddy in the background.
People are still afraid — and who can blame them?
They may have gotten the leader – Raniere – but his money hench-women and his Mexican enforcer are still in the background and that’s why people post anonymously.
A very small-looking Keith Raniere in a Mexican police car – about to be deported to the US where he would be charged in the US Courts with sex trafficking – well demonstrates the proverb, “The wheels of justice grind slowly but exceedingly fine.”