Frank Parlato praised for NXIVM breakup by Catherine Oxenberg

Editor’s note: The following story appears in this week’s edition of the Niagara Reporter, a weekly print and online publication that I own. The story tends to praise me lavishly, and was written by the managing editor of my own newspaper [so what else would he be expected to write about me, his boss, criticism?]  The only feeble excuse I can offer for republishing it on Frank Report is that it gives a few new details about Catherine Oxenberg, her excellent and riveting book, “Captive”, and our joint efforts to stop a gruesome cult led by a “devious rascal” by the name of Keith Alan Raniere, and known to his followers as The Vanguard.

The headline in the Niagara Reporter is:

Dynasty Star Catherine Oxenberg praises Reporter Publisher Frank Parlato for helping ‘hundreds’ of women ‘escape the horrors of branding and slavery’

NXIVM lawyers condemn Parlato in court for continuing to write about cult

By Nick D’Angelo

Dynasty star Catherine Oxenberg was able to rescue her daughter, India Oxenberg, from the sex slaver cult NXIVM – and she says – it was thanks in large part to the efforts of Frank Parlato, publisher of the Niagara Reporter.

In her best-selling book, ‘Captive,’ published by Simon and Schuster, Oxenberg details how her 27-year-old daughter, India was held down and branded on her pubic region with a white-hot cauterizing pen with the initials of NXIVM leaders Keith Raniere and former Smallville actress Allison Mack.

Catherine and India Oxenberg

In her book, Catherine details how she came to Parlato – who was then the only voice speaking out against the cult – and told him about her daughter being branded.

Parlato broke the news of the branding and blackmailing of women in the Niagara Reporter, Artvoice and on his blog, the Frank Report.

This created the catalyst for NXIVM to fall apart, as Parlato wrote and published more than 1,000 stories for the Reporter, Artvoice and Frank Report, prompting NXIVM followers to leave in droves and the mainstream media to take note of the vicious cult for the first time.

This relentless style of writing and publishing followed the same pattern Parlato earlier showed when he published story after story about the secretive Maid of the Mist lease, which prompted the Toronto Globe and Mail to follow up on his story and ultimately led to the Minister of Tourism ordering the Canadian lease out to bid, which in turn led to the Maid of the Mist losing their lease in Canada resulting in some $300 million more in revenue for Ontario.

Following Parlato’s reporting on NXIVM last year, Oxenberg and Parlato, along with former NXIVM members, Marc Vicente, [also a movie director] Bonnie Piesse [an actress in Star Wars] and others – including branded slaves – interviewed with the New York Times.

The blockbuster New York Times story confirmed what Parlato had written and credited him with making NXIVM members aware of the news that women were being branded- which allowed many of them to escape.

Barry Meier was the first in the mainstream media to write about the branding of women.

The Times wrote, “many of Mr. Raniere’s followers learned of the secret society [that brands and blackmails women] from a website run by a Buffalo-area businessman, Frank R. Parlato Jr. Mr. Parlato had been locked in a long legal battle with two sisters, Sara and Clare Bronfman, who are members of Nxivm and the daughters of Edgar Bronfman, the deceased chairman of Seagram Company….

“In early June [2017], Mr. Parlato published the first in a torrent of salacious posts under the headline, ‘Branded Slaves and Master Raniere.’

The New York Times story sparked an interest by the US Attorney for the Eastern District of NY. The FBI opened an investigation into the cult that led to the arrest of Raniere, Mack, Bronfman and others.

Ironically it was Bronfman and Raniere who originally filed a criminal complaint against Parlato.

“He turned it around on them.” famed political consultant Roger Stone said, “what Frank Parlato did was one of the most epic takedowns in media history.”

Oxenberg’s book gives never before published details of hers and Parlato’s role in taking down the cult, including their first meeting when the actress came to Niagara Falls to get Parlato’s help in saving her daughter and bringing the cult to justice.

In her acknowledgements, at the end of the book, Oxenberg wrote about the worldwide media attention that followed their efforts.

She writes, “I’m grateful to the members of the media for the relentless coverage given to exposing the atrocities of NXIVM, helping to generate much needed public outrage. Thank to Barry Meier [NY Times], Liz McNeil [People], Brendon Lyons [Albany Times Union], Megyn Kelly [Today Show], Glenn Ruppel [20-20], Elizabeth Vargas [20-20], Tim Uehlinger [Dateline], Chemene Pelzer [Today Show], John Filimon [Producer], Alicia Powers [Inside Edition], Scott Thompson [Publicist] and many more. And a very special thanks to Frank Parlato: because of your tireless efforts, hundreds defected and escaped the horrors of branding and slavery.”

Not all were praising Parlato however. Last week in federal court, where NXIVM leaders are expected to stand trial for sex trafficking and racketeering, NXIVM attorneys asked Judge Nicholas Garaufis to protect the defendants and their friends from Parlato’s relentless coverage of the cult.

At a Status Conference for USA v Raniere et al., in the Federal Courthouse for the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn, and in multiple court filings, attorneys for Raniere, made a motion to have the judge close the courtroom from the public in order that Parlato would not discover certain details about their case.

Marc Agnifilo is interviewed by Megan Kelly.

Raniere’s attorney, Marc Agnifilo, said that anyone who might be willing to post bail for Raniere is afraid their names will be published by Parlato.

Raniere’s attorney pointed out that, because Parlato was indicted based on a complaint by NXIVM leaders, Bronfman and Raniere, Parlato had a self-proclaimed agenda to destroy NXIVM. He argued that potential guarantors of Raniere’s bail bond must be shielded from Parlato maliciously identifying them. The only way to do that, Agnifilo said, was to close the courtroom and seal their names from the public.

The prosecution opposed the unprecedented motion to close the courtroom from the press. Parlato’s name was mentioned more than 40 times in court papers and dozens of times in open court.  The defense said the co-guarantors were so afraid of what will happen if they are discovered by Parlato that they are not willing to sign for his bail unless their names were sealed.

The prosecution, as well as Probation and Pretrial Supervision Services said they adamantly oppose Raniere getting bail on the grounds that he is a danger to the community and a flight risk.

The next court hearing is set for Oct 4.

Meantime, most of the news is good. Oxenberg‘s book is a best seller, her daughter, India is safe and living at her home in Malibu, California. She even found a new boyfriend – not related to the sex slaver cult.

The New York Post credited Parlato last week for his role in that too, writing “Frank Parlato, the former Nxivm publicist … worked for years to expose the cult,” in a story reporting India’s new romance.

Catherine Oxenberg, in her personal inscription in her book written to Parlato wrote, “You were the gunpowder, the canon, and much more in blowing NXIVM to smithereens. I owe you a debt of gratitude for your indefatigable offensive opposing one of the world’s most devious rascals [Raniere].”

Oxenberg’s book, Captive, is available at major booksellers and online through Amazon.






About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • NXIVM is afraid of Frank Parlato, so afraid they are actually drawing more attention to his publications with every gutless request they put before the court. Hopefully they will continue these ridiculous requests which are obviously coming from the defendants, but they are making the lawyers look pretty stupid too. Freedom of the press, thank you again Frank. Those of us watching from the outside consider what you’ve done as heroic. The number of women who have been given a 2nd chance, the future girls that will not grow up to be a part of this cult. The NXIVM posters on this site or those just reading it take the time to read up on cults and cult deprogrammers. You might be surprised at the similarities, Keith was not especially creative, he took methods that worked for others added a few brainwashing techniques thanks to Nancy Salzman and started destroying self esteem, family connections, created an atmosphere of secrecy and unfortunately for thousands of people he love bombed two very insecure and wealthy young women, convincing them to attack anyone who tried to leave or fought back. A perfect storm. Thank God they went after Frank Parlato, if not they would still be operating.

  • Catherine Oxenberg claimed she was recruited into NXIVM by some chick. Her ex-husband Casper Van Dien was/is in NXIVM. He was on Necker Island in 2010. Wouldn’t it of been him to get his wife involved?

  • A big thank you to Frank, Catherine and all the others who have helped to expose this group for who they are and the manipulation that has taken place with thousands who thought they were taking a course on how to be more successful in their lives.

    Shame on you to all those who continue to support and help the animals who run this CULT.

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