Judge Nicholas Garaufis is the presiding judge in the United States vs Keith Raniere, Clare Bronfman, Allison Mack, Nancy Salzman, Lauren Salzman and fall girl Kathy Russell.

NXIVM trial pushed back to March – Judge scolds Raniere’s attorney – compares him to third grader

Today’s status conference in federal court in Brooklyn did not go well for Keith Raniere – or his high-priced NYC attorney, Marc Agnifilo.

The trial date was pushed back to March 2019. Trial was formerly set to begin in January but, as Frank Report correctly predicted, that date was a near impossibility and would be pushed back.

Defendants Keith Raniere, Allison Mack, Clare Bronfman, Lauren Salzman and Kathy Russell attended the hearing. Nancy Salzman was absent, it was said, due to recent surgery. However, it became apparent in court that Nancy is cooperating with the prosecution.

She may be the first to accept a plea deal – which means, despite her being one of the most culpable  criminals of NXIVM – she may have secured herself a nice seat on the prosecution’s bus.

Prefect walked into court with attorney David Stern – at her arraignment in July. She has not appeared at the last two court appearances due to a recent surgery.

 

Right now, Frank Report is giving even money that Nancy will do less time than NXIVM low-level fall gal Kathy Russell and a number of others not yet indicted who might be nabbed in the next superseding indictment – now estimated to come out sometime this year.

Raniere, 58, entered the courtroom in his brown prison garb with a smirk on his face.  He was wearing his prison issued black eye glasses and seems to have lost a little weight. His hair looked grayer than ever – leading at least one person familiar with the vanity of the Vanguard to opine that he must have formerly dyed his hair – something he cannot do in prison – which explains the sudden almost complete graying of the leader of NXIVM. He has been in custody for more than six months.

Raniere sat down at the defendants’ table amid the other defendants, almost directly across from a grim- faced Lauren Salzman. Like she did at the last hearing, Lauren refused to look at Raniere.  At one point – as Raniere seemed to be looking at her to get her attention, and it seemed as if her eyes almost strayed in his direction – she turned away, shifting her body position to avoid eye contact with the man who once promised her a lovely avatar baby.

Allison Mack looked skinnier than ever and older than her age.

Allison Mack, 35, also arrived to court as chipper as a clam – even laughing with lawyers before the hearing began. When the great one arrived, she did not look at him either.  He glanced in her direction several times, but Allison looked away from the man whose initials, alongside hers, have been branded into the pubic region of an estimated 150 women.

Even Clare Bronfman, 39, the sadistic monster who funded the evil cult, was markedly different than she was at the last court hearing. Last time, she looked adoringly at her Vanguard, smiling frequently at him like a teenager in love. This time, she looked positively ghastly and grim  – much like she did when she was berating some illegal alien she contrived to falsify documents to get her into the country then force her to work for no pay doing menial services.

Clare Bronfman AKA Legatus, pays for the lawyers.

Bronfman – known also as Legatus – did not look at her Vanguard. This is strange indeed since it is she,  along with her sister, Sara Bronfman-Igtet, who are funding the battery of lawyers representing the cult leaders. It was a dark day in the history of NXIVM, for Legatus was not smiling adoringly at the man who brought her to where she is today.

One little lady however was brave and steadfast – it was pretty ballerina Kathy Russell, aged 60. She looked adoringly several times at her Vanguard.  She was the only one who showed the respect due to her leader.  For more than a decade, she has been the designated fall girl for NXIVM and though a lowly bookkeeper, NXIVM top rank insisted she sign her name on many important documents. She seems ready to fulfill her role and take the fall for her ethical leader.

Kathy Russell

Today’s hearing started off harmoniously, it seemed, when Assistant U.S. attorney Moira Penza told the the judge that her office has been working “effectively” with the defendants’ attorneys on discovery issues.  She then told the judge that all the defense attorneys agreed the trial should begin in March 2019.

This was a surprising occurrence and it rankled the judge.  At the last court hearing, the defense attorneys seemed to have almost snubbed the judge when he asked them about the timing of the case.

This time, Judge Nicholas Garaufis scolded Raniere’s lawyer, Marc Agnifilo – and the other lawyers – for remaining “silent” at the last hearing when he asked their thoughts about a timeline.  The judge said he was appalled that he received “stony silence” from NXIVM attorneys at last month’s hearing.

According to Radar Online’s Melissa Roberto, who was in court, the Judge said, “Someone please explain to me! The point is we went from one extreme to another. You all are trained on how to talk to judges. You just left me in silence. Don’t you ever dare do that again, ever!” Garaufis screamed. “If you want to have a relationship of trust and professionalism you have to be prepared to meet me halfway. I’ve done this 18 and a half years. No one has ever done this to me before. I’m not playing games with people. I left this courtroom having been basically ignored. When I ask you a question and you sit there and you don’t even answer my question it is unacceptable.”

Agnifilo rose to explain. In a soft and mellifluous voice – one such that butter perhaps would not melt in his mouth – while he was speaking – said, “We would never ignore your honor,” adding that all the defense attorneys “took the last court hearing very seriously.”

The judge referred to their behavior as what one would expect from children in “third grade.” He asked every NXIVM attorney the same question to make sure they were all in agreement.

Frank Report’s confidential source, who was at the hearing today reported, “At least a third of today’s hearing consisted of the judge yelling at the defense attorneys over what he characterized as ‘inappropriate and unacceptable’ behavior in his courtroom.

“Much of the judge’s anger was related to the fact that the defense attorneys have been arguing from Day #1 that they wanted to go trial as soon as possible. Then, three weeks after the judge confirms January 7th as the start date for the trial – and before the defense attorneys have seen one shred of the evidence that the prosecutors have gathered – the defense attorneys unanimously agree to postpone opening arguments until March 18, 2019.

“The defense attorneys previously refused to exclude the time that they were going to be working with the magistrate judge and the prosecution from the Speedy Trial requirements – and they opposed the prosecution’s motion to designate this matter as a complex case. Now, a mere three weeks later, they come back and advise the court that they’ve agreed to a three-month delay for the start of the trial without any plausible explanation for their changed position.

“It looks to me like the judge thought that he’d been disrespected by the defense attorneys – and decided to pay them back in-kind. Things like this are usually handled in chambers rather than in a public courtroom setting – especially for a high-profile guy like Marc Agnifilo. So, the judge must be seriously pissed off – especially at Marc.

“Raniere knew right away that what happened today was very negative. He went from smirking to grimacing in an instant. I would not be surprised to see several ‘Notices of Appearance’ filed in the next few weeks as Raniere adds new lawyers to his defense team and maybe gets rid of some of his current lawyers.”

***

There appear to be more indications that Nancy is cooperating with the prosecution. A source tells me that Nancy – though ill and in recovery – is nevertheless making gurgling noises that she describes as sounding not unlike the singing of a canary.

If Nancy is singing, the fate of the Vanguard looks bleak – for Nancy knows myriad crimes and, as a co conspirator, can provide the path to documentary evidence and corroborating witnesses.

If Prefect sings  – though she be not fat – this will be all over for Vanguard.

In addition, her daughter, Lauren, 41, not looking even sideways at Vanguard – the man who promised to impregnate her as soon as she got rid of her disintegrations – and have that child who  would save the world – does not augur well.

 

In the past, Lauren Salzman was all smiles when she thought about her Vanguard – but now she seems to be sullen in court and her eyes avoided her Lordly Master….

Though Lauren may have to abandon the nursery and dreams of motherhood with her Lord V – she, if she decides to tell all – may be saving herself decades in prison.

The mystery woman now is sinister Clare Bronfman. With $200 million or so in assets – she is a prize for government forfeiture.  Is her faith in Vanguard shaken? Will she continue to fund the defense when that first irrevocable trust for the lawyers is depleted?

In addition to the 27 lawyers already identified in Frank Report, an informed source tells me the Bronfman trust is paying for several more lawyers for presently unindicted NXIVM members and NXIVM witnesses.

The next status hearing is scheduled for December 6th.

Frank Report predicts the March 2019 trial date will be postponed. My guess is that the earliest this trial will begin is October 2019 and more likely January 2020.  I base my prediction on the complexity of the case, the eventual caving of one or more defendants, and the high probability of additional charges and new defendants being named in the next superseding indictment.

He who has the most joy wins.

Keith Raniere’s photograph is shown to an audience of NXIVM devotees at Vanguard Week.

About the author

Frank Parlato

Frank Parlato is the founder of the FrankReport, publisher and editor-in-chief of Artvoice, The Niagara Falls Reporter, Front Page and the South Buffalo News.

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    • Her thighs looked really big in the photo of her getting the Amazon box a while ago.

      Her neck looks like a twig her head is about to fall off of, though, so maybe she got back on her diet.

  • Poor Keith, can’t his hairdresser friend do something about his hair, what’s her name. Alice, or Alayne or Allison? Please don’t let the few members left discover Vanguard is dishonest and dyes his hair. They will be heartbroken.

  • What if CB tries to do a ‘Patty Hearst’. I know Hearst was at least initially kidnapped by the SLA, but could the uptown (old) girl claim to have been coerced and raped by Raniere? Be charged and have her sentence commuted by well placed members of her family’s ‘social circle’?

    I dont suppose any of the nxivm defendants will be giggling like ‘chipper clams’ after Judge Garaufis’ righteous outburst. They should watch with the contempt. Then again, contempt along with disdain and disgust, is all these stupid criminals have.

    • Interesting. I listened to a few minutes of KR’s attorney on the podcast (OMG it was an agonizing listen) and he says he is utterly convinced KR is innocent and all the women were the crooks.

      • Keith Raniere is NOT innocent, however I agree that his fanatical female followers are as guilty as he is.
        The women who facilitated Raniere’s sick and twisted fantasies enabled him to victimize numerous other women.

      • I haven’t seen the podcast yet, Keith’s attorney calling ex-members crooks doesnt sound like a smart move. Agnifilo appears to be a rather soft man like Keith, he’s just not as smart he really should clear his comments with Vanguard before vomiting them out to the public.

        • Since Agnifilo is his attorney, I assume Agnifilo’s comments and discussion on the podcast are in KR’s best interest. It’s “Uncovering NXIVM”, episode 6 “The Defense”, 25 minutes. I could only tolerate about 5 minutes of his nonsense. I don’t know – are lawyers trained to lie? If so, he’s doing a damn good job of sounding like he really thinks this dick is clean and pure as a newborn baby.

  • To illustrate how much Ms. Mack changed over the last 18 months compare these two photographs.

    In the Spring of 2017, about two months after Ms. Mack supervised the branding of Sarah Edmondson, she appeared in a play titled Red Velvet in the Old Globe Theater in San Diego’s Balboa Park.
    Her wife Nicki Clyne took this photo of her where she looks like the cat that swallowed the canary.
    https://www.instagram.com/p/BTabOFxFPvz/?hl=en&taken-by=nickiclyne

    Then look at the more recent photo of Ms. Mack contained in this post and it will be clear that she has lost weight and aged considerably.

    NXIVM jis truly a transformational philosophy.

    • Yes, sadly, there is not much left of your beloved “Chloe”. Let’s see if the female defendants’ attorneys are savy enough to increase the female presence on the defense team and play the currently popular #me too card, painting the NXIVM female defendants as brainwashed victims and Van(prison)guard as a master manipulator. Life in prison for Raniere, a shorter sentence and a large forfeiture for Bronfman, and relative slaps on the wrist for Mrs and Mrs Mack, the Salzman spawn and other “badass bitches” of NXIVM.

  • Are there no pictures for this appearance as well? Seems like there always were for all of the hearings except these last two.

  • Here’s what I don’t understand: the judge apparently suffered from a “disintegration” in court, but there is no mention of the Vanguard offering to provide counseling assistance to the judge. How is it possible that the Vanguard could sit idly by and allow the honorable judge to suffer a “disintegration”?

    Either the story is incomplete, or Vanguard is not as big a humanitarian as he claims. Which is it?

    • no one will believe her.

      Pea Onyu:
      They will believe the thousands of documents contained in the NXIVM computers that Nancy will unlock with the passwords.

      And doesn’t Vanguard Raniere bear some blame for the disintegration of NXIVM?

  • Nancy is a POS and nothing she says should be believed by anyone. The jury given the choice between V and Lame Nancy will believe the truth. Vanguard is innocent and he will be acquitted.

    • Is this a joke? Are you on drugs? There is a mountain of evidence against Keith Raniere. There is not a jury on this planet that would acquit Vanguard. You must be joking, on drugs, brainwashed, or all of the above.

    • Vanguard is innocent and he will be acquitted

      Pea Onyu

      And Superman will fly in and rescue Vanguard and ALL his loyal followers.
      And Vanguard, Clare and Allison will live in a tropical paradise in Fiji.

    • Your Vanguard is probably not tough enough to survive in prison, though those knee pads from the grotesque volleyball picture are probably coming in handy

  • It looks like the current defendants finally realize how much trouble they are in. I suspect either through discovery or Nancy turning on Rainere that Clare may have found out the truth about her role in Nxivm and how unimportant she really was to him., the defense attorneys seem to be aware of something big and I also don’t see this trial starting for a very long time.
    A brief time with an ankle moniter wasn’t enough for the major changes in VANGUARDS loyal followers. Nancy it is never to late for forgiveness.
    Is Allison Mack all there?

          • To anonymous:
            The major threat to the Mack family is not me or even illegal aliens.
            It’s from Allison Mack who claimed to have sexually molested her four year old nephew.

            If the Orange County Sheriff wants to investigate anything, let him investigate that.
            The FBI has Allison Mack’s signed confession to the molestation.

      • Then please explain how “she aged considerably” in a few months. If in fantasy land then we could rule out stress oh worshipper of Mack.

        • Aside from lack of food, she has probably stopped using botox or maybe Keith had a white milky liquid for the skin too. Seeing a real possibility of the inner circle crumbling has created some much needed levity on this site. Overall there seems to be some missing posters that were creating a bad atmosphere. Please continue to stay away.

          • Most likely normal people are not going to bother to write stupid post after stupid post, like you do every day.

            I’ve yet to see you post anything even vaguely intelligent. You’re not only stupid, but you’re a passive aggressive lying cunt as well.

            Fuck off , twit.

  • “but Allison looked away from the man whose initials, alongside hers, have been branded into the pubic region of an estimated 150 women”.

    How many women recruited by Kristin Crook ended up branded? Other than Ally Wack.

  • Could it be that the judge recognizes that the defense lawyers agreement to a later trial date is to maximize their billable hours ?

    Before discovery started, the defense might have expected a long and lucrative trial.

    But now that discovery has started, the defense sees that it’s all going to be over really quick.

    So the most profitable thing for the defense lawyers is to agree to all possible postponements

    Not that the postponements will get the defendents of the hook.

    But an ethical judge would be upset with defense lawyers just maximizing their billing for no benefit to their clients.

    What do you think, Omar ?

      • Now that he is an attorney of record in a lawsuit against Sara Bronfman specifically related to this situation, it is probably better for him not to be seen commenting here…

        That is my guess.

    • I can chirp in on this limited question…I think the Judge was concerned about scheduling.

      If the Defense attorneys are constantly yammering in motions (and letters to the Court) ‘Speedy Trial’ and insisting they are ‘Ready to Go’, the Court takes that into consideration for trial schedules. So, when the Defense attorneys then show up and say, “No problem pushing this back your Honor, we are in concurrence with the Government (the US Attorney’s Office)” that frustrates the Judge. That is why the Court asked Defense counsel individually if they were ready and agreed to the postponement.

      Remember, this isn’t the only case the Judge has. He civil cases, other criminal cases, sentencings, pleas, motions hearings, etc. And the court staff have to arrange calendars. So, it helps if the Defense keeps the Court updated on their progress and desired trial schedule.

      I think the larger problem is the miscommunication we are seeing between Defense counsel. One group says, ‘Let’s get it On!’. The other group says ‘Not so fast.’ So which is it?

      And beyond that, I think that the Defense has been thrown for an unexpected loop, by the possible cooperation of Nancy Salzman. Because now, you have a witness that can walk the jury through the illegal activities (from an insider’s perspective). Plus, Salzman can testify as to how exactly she came to be holding $500,000 in cash in her house. Was she holding it for Keith? Was it a bug-out fund? Was it money brought in from Mexico via private jet? Why didn’t she just use a bank like a normal person? All of these are interesting questions.

      Like the wise man said…’Whoever gets on the bus First, gets the Best Seats!’ Plus, you can either ride the bus or get run over by it…

      More soon…

      • Makes sense. A judge has his own schedule issues, and if he juggles other cases for the sake of the NXIVM defendants, and they then want a completely different timeline, he would be pissed.

      • Why wasn’t Keith in the know about the postponement. Are his lawyers just telling him what he wants to hear? His funding is going to run out before long will he be needing a public defender? Wish we knew what was going on in his cell tonight.

        • All good questions, especially the last one 🙂
          I didn’t know about any of this till it hit the news and am glad I found Frank’s site.
          This is a story that keeps getting better, and watching it play out is fascinating.
          I just don’t understand any of it, maybe that’s part of my fascination. Who in their right mind would “buy in” (literally and/or figuratively) to any of this nonsense? Perhaps none of them are in their right minds, and that’s the answer.

          In other news. Tom Cruise hasn’t seen Suri in years cuz she’s not a Scientologist. SMH at the nonsense in this world.

      • Scott is a troll. His own life sucks so much, that he has to go on the internet and constantly attack others to make himself feel better. Unemployed, wears diapers, impotent.

        So he has to compensate by creating a fantasy world on a computer where he’s top dog.

  • Perhaps, after the joviality of the last hearing, Clare’s attorneys finally bothered to instruct her to never smile at a crocodile.

    My guess is that almost everybody is so serious because there has already been discussions about the next indictments, and it is about to get a whole lot worse in their world. Ally Whack may not be all that affected by the next round, and sticking to the old playbook of pretending life is grand.

    I really hope Raniere sticks with Agnifilo since he doesn’t have a good track record when cases actually go to trial.

    All random thoughts, anyhow. Grateful to see it went well today.

    • Ally Whack may not be all that affected by the next round, and sticking to the old playbook of pretending life is grand.

      Or she could be just plain delusional.
      She fancies herself to be a heroic figure like Joan of Arc.

      allisonmack729″Every man gives his life for what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Sometimes people believe in little or nothing, and so they give their lives to little or nothing. One life is all we have, and we live it as we believe in living it…and then it’s gone. But to surrender who you are and to live without belief is more terrible than dying – even more terrible than dying young.” #joanofarc #greatestheros #belikeyou #standforwhatyounknowistrue
      https://www.instagram.com/p/Baj2Ii7BbIB/?taken-by=allisonmack729

      • Whatever kool-aid vanguard has been giving his harem in addition to the brainwashing has messed this girl up. I think she’s more mentally deranged than loyal. She’s probably going to go with a crazy defense.

  • Wow, “Frank’s Source”, tell us how you really feel. You seem overly pissed about something that isn’t that big of a deal. I hope she does “sing”/cooperate with the prosecution. As for all this new info, thank you Frank. Things aren’t looking good for the defense. And that makes me happy. Does that mean I “win” today? (I have the most joy at reading this latest post).

    • That’s because the person posting here with the name “Frank’s Source” is probably Clare’s invisible-man attorney, Mr. Fast N’ Furious, Arms Traffickin’ Fast-N-Furious resignin’ Dennis K. Burke. Burke loses his mind whenever he thinks one of Frank Parlato’s articles is using Jeffrey Peterson as one of Frank’s “anonymous sources.” What Burke may not realize is that Parlato has numerous credible sources who have provided accurate information to Frank Parlato, who is a journalist, on the condition of anonymity. The anonymous source who told Frank that Nancy is making sounds like a canary singing, is DEFINITELY NOT Jeffrey Peterson. Jeffrey Peterson has no idea about what Nancy is or isn’t doing. Jeffrey Peterson doesn’t know anything about Nancy. He knows a LOT about Burke, though . . .

        • Burke’s plans? Who knows. Maybe Burke will continue trying to edit Jeffrey Peterson’s Wikipedia page, to move the defamatory “hit piece” news article Burke manufactured about Peterson in the Arizona Republic newspaper to the top of Peterson’s Wikipedia page, with hopes to discredit Peterson. After all, Burke has attempted to do so many times already. Life is strange in that way. One year you’re a big shot U.S. Attorney like Burke, covering up U.S. Government arms trafficking operations for the Attorney General of the United States under Obama. A few years later, you’re editing people’s Wikipedia pages until late hours of the morning. Indeed Burke has become a masterful author of defamatory “hit piece” news articles full of overt lies, and an adept editor of Peterson’s Wikipedia page. The University of Arizona, where Burke earned his law degree, must be proud.

          • Yep this son of a bitch Burke is a swamp creature who is going to have his filthy corrupt ass drained sooner than he realizes. Want to talk Denny?

  • When the Judge said he expected the trial to start in October 2018 I said at the time that his desire was totally unrealistic.

    In fact I predicted that October 2019 was more realistic.
    And even a 2020 start date is well within the realm of possibility.

    I would advise the prosecution to be very sparing in handing out plea deals until ALL of the computer files have been examined for possible new charges and new defendants.

    “Allison Mack, 35, also arrived to court as chipper as a clam – even laughing with lawyers before the hearing began.”

    And why would Ms. Mack be laughing?
    She’s a major guest of honor at an execution. Hers.
    Perhaps she is happy to be on the verge of living out her life long goal of being Joan or Arc about to be burned at the stake.

    • Why would Ms Mack be laughing?

      Maybe she met a cute professor in one of her college classes. Cheer up big bro, maybe you’ll never have the real Allison, but you’ll always have the blowup doll lookalike of her that you ordered from Japan 🙂

      • Good God in Heaven, she is not all that attractive – I do not sense Shadow is obsessed with her – canckles, too much gum, rather large nose) Can you relax a bit? And no, I will not post a picture of myself. Suffice it to say she looks better.

        • Ms. Mack’s main importance is that her craziness and brutality brought down Federal heat on NXIVM.
          Until the branding was revealed law enforcement agencies went out of their way to ignore the cult and its many crimes.
          And once the FBI started looking into NXIVM they opened up a can of worms.
          Money laundering, tax evasion, fraud and the Feds are still investigating.

          To be honest I doubt that Ms. Mack really understands how her actions destroyed NXIVM and have brought herself and her friends to justice.

          Over the years I’ve been involved in many trials, serious criminal trials..
          Never as a defendant, Thank God!
          And trials are a grim, serious business.

          Even as a bystander who was not in legal jeopardy, I would get nightmares whenever my work required me to attend a criminal trial.
          I can’t imagine a defendant attending her own trial happy as a clam laughing with the criminal defense attorneys.
          Ms. Mack is truly a rare, strange bird.
          She’s,not altogether sane.

          • Thanks for that info. Maybe she’s not altogether there as in, not the brightest crayon in the box.

            Why do you think all the people were avoiding looking at KR except Kathy? And why are all of them being tried together?

          • Reply to lilikoan:

            Your welcome for the info.

            The defendants are told not to associate with one another.

            And Raniere is the most toxic defendant of the bunch.

            Why are all of the defendants being tried together?
            Because this is a conspiracy case and conspirators are usually tried together.
            Because Nancy is probably cooperating she will probably not appear with the other defendants except to testify during the trial.
            Nancy’s health is a convenient excuse to explain her absence.

            But expect other conspirators to be indicted.
            Particularly Nicki Clyne and Dr. Danielle Roberts.

        • “I do not sense Shadow is obsessed with her”

          You have not paid much attention have you? Or you are as dumb as a box of rocks.

          • I tend to skip over as many of the vile comments as I can, including yours. I do not focus on someone’s age, gender, political affiliation or alleged sexual interests.

          • Ummm no shadowperv, just pointing out the obvious about your obsession with a much younger woman who is also a criminal. Pick better youngins to perv over will ya

  • Frank, I don’t believe your source saying that Nancy is making gurgling noises that sound like a canary singing (like she’s cooperating).

    It sounds like your source is just making shit up. Either she’s singing like a canary to the government or she’s not. Which is it?

    You can’t say that there’s indications she’s *maybe* cooperating already, but then say she’s singing like a canary (already talking to the government).

    Either she is talking to them already or she ain’t.

    Your source either knows for sure or HE’S FULL OF SHIT and deserves to BURN IN HELL for it.

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