Who Gets Immunity Or A Plea Deal?

The bus is small on this ride

Although many people think of “immunity” and “plea deals” as being one and the same, they are, in fact, quite different legal concepts, both in theory and in practice.


To begin with, there are actually three different types of immunity.

The first of these is called Proffer Letter Immunity  – and it’s the most common and weakest type. All it does is allow someone to meet with federal investigators and/or prosecutors with the assurance that, with two exceptions, what they say won’t be used against them later on in a criminal proceeding.

The first exception is that the feds can use anything the person says to collect evidence that can subsequently be used against them – and the second exception is that if the person subsequently testifies in court and says something different than what they said in their King/Queen For A Day meeting, the feds can use their original statement to impeach their testimony.

The second type is called Letter Immunity – and it usually involves a fairly detailed agreement that is negotiated between an individual’s legal representative and the feds. What this kind of immunity gives someone is a promise by the feds that they won’t use what the person says against them, either to find other evidence or for any kind of prosecution.

The third type is called Statutory Immunity – and it’s the rarest and strongest type. What this type of immunity means is that a federal district court judge looked at the possible testimony that someone would give in a grand jury proceeding or at a trial and decided that the person has, per the Fifth Amendment, a legitimate right not to answer any question – and then ordered the person to testify anyway.

So, with all that in mind, which of the current – or potential – NXIVM defendants is likely to get immunity? Most likely no one. And if anyone does, it most likely will be only Proffer Letter Immunity – which, as noted, does not really offer any guaranty that a person won’t be prosecuted.

There are three very important reasons why the feds probably won’t offer immunity to anyone.

First, they already have one or more defendants who will likely agree to plea deals that will require them to divulge everything they know about the NXIVM crime syndicate that was being run by Keith Raniere and the Bronfmans (Most immunity deals happen before the prosecution has been able to secure any indictments – and it needs testimony from one or more insiders to do so).

Second, the feds already have several witnesses who will supply critical testimony against Raniere and his criminal cohorts. This includes the “Jane Does” that were cited in the indictment and the superseding indictment – and numerous others who are quite willing to tell what they know about the criminal activities of Raniere et al.

Third, thanks to Raniere’s ego-driven demand to have virtually everything he ever said filmed and/or recorded – and his sick need to collect blackmail material on both his friends and enemies – the prosecution has a virtual treasure trove of documentary evidence to use at trial.


Current defendants:

Allison Mack
Clare Bronfman
Nancy Salzman
Lauren Salzman
Kathy Russell
The man who brought them all to where they are today – Keith Raniere

Plea Deals

Plea deals, on the other hand, are agreements in a criminal case between the prosecution and a defendant whereby the defendant agrees to plead guilty to one or more specific charges in return for some concession(s) from the prosecutor. This, in turn, usually ensures that the defendant will get a certain sentence – although, depending on how the plea deal is structured, the actual sentence may be left up to the discretion of the presiding judge.

So, which of the current – or potential – NXIVM defendants is likely to get a plea deal? Well, it won’t be many – and the first ones to the bargaining table will undoubtedly get the best deals.

And without naming any specific names, there are probably six types of defendants that the feds would consider for plea deals:

(1) Someone who can provide details about the DOS sex trafficking operations.

(2) Someone who can provide details about some/all of the financial-related crimes (e.g., money laundering, tax evasion, etc.).

(3) Someone who can provide details about NXIVM’s abuse of the legal system, both in terms of its numerous, baseless civil lawsuits – and the lies and perjuries it used to get innocent people indicted.

(4) Someone who can provide details about the various public officials who were bribed or blackmailed in order to turn their back on NXIVM’s illegal activities – or to aid and abet NXIVM in the commission of crimes.

(5) Someone who can provide details about all of NXIVM’s illegal IT-related activities (e.g., the hacking into others’ emails accounts; the planting of keyloggers, spyware, and viruses on others’ computers; the planting of child pornography on John Tighe’s computer; etc.).

(6) Someone who can provide details about NXIVM’s operations in Mexico.

So the Plea Deal Bus could possibly have as many as six seats. Now, the question is who’s going to fill them…


About the author

K.R. Claviger


Click here to post a comment

Please leave a comment: Your opinion is important to us! (Email & username are optional)

  • What about Nikki Cline? She was married to Allison Mack and was a part of the inner circle. I haven’t heard much about her. I guess she wasn’t inner circle enough to be arrested? Or maybe she is co-operating for immunity or a plea deal? There must be countless others. I’m just amazed that Vicente, Edmondson, Ames and others won’t see any prosecutions at all. They must have fully co-operated. They were at the epicenter of the growth of this organization, especially Edmondson (the Vancouver office), who was responsible for recruiting Cline, Mack, Kreuk, Hildreth, Park and other acting notables into Nxium. It’s just beyond me that Vicente and Edmondson, two of the cornerstones of Nxium who earned good money for enrolling people and running centers are getting off like heroes. They betrayed everyone. I wonder how they can live with themselves after they potentially ruined 100s of lives while going along with their dear leader for so long. Does anyone really believe they didn’t know more? If you look at any cult: The Peoples’ Temple, Rajnishpura, Heavan’s Gate, Manson Family you will see that many of the underlings knew and went along and even facilitated the operations of the organization.

    • Eyetaliano, a lot of exes are going to get away with certain crimes and it may not be fair. These people have also given up a lot, self respect, income , loss of family ( I can’t imagine to many spouses accepting Raineres initials branded on their wives pelvis) loss of friends and community. These are huge things. Lost because they came forward and stood their ground publicly as their are still exes in hiding I’d say that took guts. Jmo

    • Eye, I just wanted to add you seem to know a lot more than I do about the workings of Vancouver and Nxvim as a whole and I can understand anger that they are making people deeply involved look heroic. They don’t to average people like me I am glad they came forward but do feel anyone involved knowingly in illegal activities should not get a free pass. I wouldn’t, you wouldn’t as I’ve been forced to learn ” Life Ain’t Fair”

    • What about Nikki Cline? She was married to Allison Mack and was a part of the inner circle

      Because Cline is still technically married to Allison Mack there might be the issue of spousal privilege where it would it be difficult to compel the two spouses to testify against each other.
      Moreover, if Cline, a non-citizen, is convicted of a felony punishable by over a year in prison, she an be deported back to Canada.

  • When you first wrote this comment on a previous post, I thought you could never be so dumb as to believe this crap, so I assumed you were just some immature kid who thought witless insults were humorous.
    Now that you are so proud that you’ve posted this again, I realize I gave you way too much credit.

    signed, The Fucking Prude.

  • Is there anything Frank can use to get the charges against him dropped or his sentence reduced. Why did the Feds add more charges against him even when they dropped the ones saying he stole $1 from the Bronfmans. Will he have to pay the $4 million forfeiture being sought by the IRS if he can give them something on Keith.

    • Because any conviction would protect them from a malicious prosecution lawsuit.

      IMO it was a gamble that they determined the odds were going to be in their favour.

  • As the Feds examine the digital files and see Ms. Mack ordering Doctor Roberts to ignore the women screaming in pain under a hot branding iron the Feds will find it very difficult to cut a plea deal with her.
    And as the Feds comb through the financial documents they will find Rainier, Cruella Bronfman and Allison Pimp Mack as thick as thieves in money laundering, tax evasion and fraud.
    As early as 2012 Joe O’Hara filed suit claiming that Rainier, Bronfman and Mack as well as numerous other Nexians were up to their necks in financial crimes.
    Now the Feds have Terabytes of documents serving as evidence of those financial crimes.
    And the Feds have photos and videos of the Sado-masochistic tortures inflicted on women under the orders of Raniere, Cruella Bronfman and Allison Pimp Mack.

    No Deals for Rainier, Bronfman and Mack, the Unholy Trinity of NXIVM.

    • “As early as 2012 Joe O’Hara filed suit claiming that Rainier, Bronfman and Mack as well as numerous other Nexians were up to their necks in financial crimes.”

      Kristin Kreuk was named in that lawsuit.

      • LOL. So was Frank. And who can take any of the additional 100 people Joe named seriously or believe he actually really knew who was doing what 6 years after he left when he didn’t know enough to name someone like Sarah Edmondson or Nicki Clyne. Those additionally named people who “MAY” have done something possibly illegal, weren’t even served so most of them probably didn’t even know they were named.

        • You are so obviously Osama Bin Spank, the stalker.

          Joe O’Hara did not name Frank Parlato in the same category as Kristin Kook and Ally Wack.

          Frank has helped bring NXIVM down. He does good. Joe O’Hara named Edmondson’s husband in his lawsuit. And just because he didn’t name Edmondson herself does not make the others innocent.

          Of course all these people knew they were named. Of course they knew about this lawsuit. And nothing came from this lawsuit because NXIVM always got away with their crimes. Look at those big names on the list. They are known devoted cultists. Salinas, the Salzmans, Benecourt, Vicente etc.

          Stop being a stalker.

      • So were over a hundred others, including one person “named” that had no last name. An example of good legal work?

        You keep repeating and repeating your guilty verdict of those “named” by O’Hara, when the lawsuit only said those hundred persons MAY POSSIBLY have committed or have knowledge of some illegal activities. Also you seem to forget that the lawsuit was dismissed, with prejudice against O’Hara.

        Lock Her (and the 100 others) Up!

        • “You keep repeating and repeating your guilty verdict of those “named” by O’Hara”

          – Others have brought up O’Hara, not just one person.

          “when the lawsuit only said those hundred persons MAY POSSIBLY have committed or have knowledge of some illegal activities”.

          – So? Being named in a lawsuit is being named in a lawsuit. Of all the thousands of people In NXIVM over the years, these people were named.

          “Also you seem to forget that the lawsuit was dismissed, with prejudice against O’Hara.”

          – How long has NXIVM been getting away with crimes? The lawsuit not leading to anything says more about a weak justice system instead of O’Hara being wrong.

          “Lock Her (and the 100 others) Up!”

          You think those 100 or so are innocent? The entire executive board was named. The Salzmans. Ally Wack. Anthony Ames. Many top NXIVM people. All the named individuals should be looked at by the authorities in the current investigation. In fact, many probably are. You are obviously a fan of a top NXIVM person named in the lawsuit and your fandom stops you from accepting any criticism of her.

          • I hate to spoil all the misinformation and speculation with some facts but here goes:

            – At the time I filed the lawsuit, I named all the parties that I had reason to believe were involved in one or more of the illegal activities that had been – or were being – carried out by Keith Raniere’s criminal enterprise. If I left someone out, it was simply because I didn’t have enough information about them at the time to include them in the lawsuit. Because, however, I expected to add parties to the lawsuit based on information I would obtain during discovery, I left that option open by including some Jane Does/John Does as named defendants in the original filing.

            – Because my bankruptcy case was still pending at the time I filed the lawsuit, the service process was carried out by the U.S. Marshals. If they didn’t serve someone, it’s because that person ducked service or simply could not be found.

            – Because my bankruptcy case was still pending at the time I filed the lawsuit, it automatically became an asset of my bankruptcy estate. As a result, it was my Bankruptcy Trustee who voluntarily agreed to have the lawsuit dismissed, not me. Given the extraordinary amount of contact that he spent with the attorney representing Clare and Sara Bronfman, I strongly suspect that he was “encouraged” to do just that.

            I’ll be happy to respond to any other questions about this matter…

          • I am glad you will be here to discuss your thoughts with this group.
            I am one of your skeptics…but I admire you for your willingness to respond,

          • When someone (or some hundred) are also named as possibly involved, are they served?
            And what do those people normally do then–hire a lawyer immediately…or maybe wait to see if they are charged or called to testify?

          • Can’t provide “legal advice” but can tell you that anyone who is named in a Complaint is part of the lawsuit, regardless of whether the language indicates they “definitely” did X or they “may have done” X. So, everyone that I named in my 2012 lawsuit was, in fact, a defendant in that lawsuit. But, as I previously noted, whether they got served depended on whether the U.S. Marshals could find them or not.

          • Yes…As I recall, I received a yellow form back regarding each of the named defendants – and the form indicated whether they had, in fact, been served. I’m not sure where those forms are right now because I think they were part of the material that the New York State Police carted off back in October 2013 when they raided my home – along with the homes of Toni Natalie and John Tighe – in conjunction with the computer crime charges that were brought against us.

  • Nancy will get any type of deal she wants, including immunity for her youngin Lauren.

    And if immunity isn’t possible, I can guaran-fucken-tee that Lauren will get only a small sentence of under 12 months, probably 6 months max.

    Nancy has too much to offer for the feds not to bend over and kiss her ass.

    If you disagree then you’re probably retarded since Nancy ain’t gonna flip if her daughter has to do prison time over 12 months, since she’s likely only facing 36 months if she goes to trial and loses anyway, via sentencing guidelines for 1st time offenders.

    Lauren isn’t facing 15 years to life like Keith and Ally. You morons.

    If she’s only facing 36 months at trial, she ain’t gonna cut a deal for more than 12 months.

    Plus Lauren is simply too sexy for prison.

    She’s too sexy for NXIVM.

    She’s too sexy for her own good.

    She’s too sexy for this blog.

    She needs to be free as a bird for this reason.

  • Could some of these spaces already be filled with women such as Karen Unteriener? Someone who appears far guiltier than Kathy Russell, and not mentioned by either side at least publicly. Or do you have to be charged first?

  • Plea deals are not handed pout like candy canes at Christmas.
    Defendants must EARN a plea deal and to do so they must be willing to plead guilty to serious crimes.

    The higher up in the organization they are the less likely to get a plea deal.
    And the massive amount of electronic and documentary evidence plus the testimony of victims make it highly unlikely that Cruella Bronfman and Allison Pimp Mack can get a plea deal.
    If Cruella could give up Emiliano she might get a plea deal but even that is unlikely.

    The only eyewitness testimony the Feds really need from the defendants is from Nancy Salzman who can unlock the computer files that will bury the defendants in an avalanche of charges.
    Lauren Salzman as the #2 in the DOS slave cult under Allison Mack might also be able to swing a plea deal as part of her mother’s cooperation.
    The rest of the defendants will have a much harder time justifying a plea deal.

    We will not have a situation where 5 defendants get a plea deal and only Raniere goes on trial.
    After all this is a RICO case that needs multiple defendants by statute.

    • Of course a defendant has to plead guilty to a crime to get a plea deal. That’s why they’re called plea deals – as in “He pled guilty to such-and-such”!

      What makes you think that the Feds need Nancy Salzman to “unlock the computer files” (whatever the hell that’s supposed to mean)? All 51 electronic devices were seized pursuant to a valid search warrant – and while there may be some argument to be made about certain “privileged material” on some of those devices, everything else can be used as evidence. Why do you think that the defense attorneys are arguing so hard to force the prosecution to follow a course-of-action that would limit how much of that material can be used at trial?

      As for your statement that “…a RICO case needs multiple defendants by statute” – maybe you haven’t noticed but there are already 6 defendants in this case. Just because someone enters into a plea deal does not change their status as a defendant in the action.

      I’m all for Google searches and Wikipedia. But if you don’t understand what you’re reading when you go to websites, you make a fool of yourself trying to explain that information to others.

      • If some of the data is encrypted then Nancy WILL be needed to unlock it, you doofus.

        If you think the FBI can break 128-256 bit AES encryption anytime soon, then you’ve watched too many movies. If that were the case then encryption would be worthless and not used by any firms.

        The FBI couldn’t break a simple bitlocker secured computer without the key, without a ton of time passing first.

        The FBI has no secret way to break good level encryption in a fast amount of time.

        • You are every bit as ignorant as shadowpev.

          As the release of CIA hacking tools highlighted, if someone can gain control of a device, they can read the messages without needing to decrypt them. And compromising endpoints – both smartphones and personal computers – is getting easier all the time.

        • First of all, only some of the 51 electronic devices that were seized at Nancy’s home were encrypted – and they’re the ones that have been sent to the FBI lab. Secondly, the contents of most encrypted devices can be read even if the device is not unlocked. Lastly, do you seriously think that Nancy Salzman has the encryption keys for those devices? Even Raniere is smarter than that.

      • If Omar Rosales had listened to you, he would never have filed a class action suit against Sara Bronfman over the bogus Executive Success Program and his clients would be out their ESP tuition money.

        • He also misunderstood the ‘unlock’ comment. He doesn’t understand that if a device is encrypted, Nancy will be needed to unlock it.

          Not sure how a defense attorney with ears like dumbo (and probably a belly to match dumbo) wouldn’t understand this.

          Maybe he went to a joke school like the Brooklyn Academy of Law just like My Cousin Vinny.

          • The Albany County Defense Attorney watches too many TV shows where the hero plugs a flash drive into a USB port and empties out a computer in 5 minutes.
            He should leave IT to the people who understand computers.
            The FBI Digital Forensics lab.

        • Did ESP people get their money back? It’s a wonder that Omar “formerNexian” Rosales has time to deal with clients if as many of the hate-filled, childish name calling posts on here are from him as has been speculated.

        • Any idea if this class has been certified yet? (Quick Shadow, run to Wikipedia and research FRCP section 23.)
          How long does Omar, Esq. think this will take?

        • So Shadow, if I take your words literally, these folks have already recovered their tuition money?

          I have not read anywhere that the “class” which is at the core of the class action suit has been certified.
          No certification, no class action.

          So as I see it, not one person who has attended an ESP (Excessive Sex Program) lecture/seminar/brainwashing session (and was not attractive enough to have attended gratis) has recovered their tuition money, but Omar has at least given these folks a glimmer of hope.

          To summarize, Omar’s clients are still out their tuition money.

          If you are going to practice law in the Court of the Frank Report Comments Section, choose your words more carefully!

      • So, wait, you are saying that even though Shadow researches all legal issues extensively (exclusively?) on Wikipedia, and watched every episode of Perry Mason (I think his personal favorite was LA District Attorney Hamilton “Ham” Burger), we should not take his legal pronouncements seriously? Really?

        Cut the man some slack. Shadow’s real area of expertise is history and world politics, hence his (dubious) assertion that the Raniere/Bronfman axis wanted to overthrow the governments of Mexico and Libya. Indeed, a very well known historian/political scientist (Catherine Oxenberg) has made the same assertion. How can a group overthrow anything when they were idiotic enough to have left a trail of incriminating breadcrumbs that the investigative team of Ray Charles, Magoo, Wonder & Keller could follow? Shadow likes to paint Raniere/Bronfman /Mack as violent master criminals and silent power brokers; they look more like Jimmy Breslin’s “Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight” to me.

        Shadow’s sole interest here is in seeing Allison Mack being punished. This may come to pass UNLESS Ms. Mack separates herself from the Bronfman underwritten legal team and finds a team of female attorneys willing to play the #me too card. This gambit might be more effective in Cadman Plaza than it was in D.C. last week.

        There is still time, Chloe. Get some attorneys who can make you seem like a misguided victim. To convince jurors of your diminished cognitive capacity, play the tape of you crying over the cross-eyed schlub’s acting advice, advice delivered with all the seriousness of one of Shadowstate’s mini seminars on RICO law and practice. If played well, Raniere and Bronfman will spend long terms in prison and you will get a slap on the wrist. Heck, in five or so years you can resume playing house with the other Ms. Mack, and maybe your branded buddy Sara Edmondson can land you a few gigs on the Hallmark Channel.

        • ACDAWBE should know by now that Shadow’s posts should be skipped over. Why he wasted his time reading the Wikipedia rehash from Shadow is the real question.

        • How much grey matter are we talking here? Raniere could only manage a 2.26 in the era of grade inflation. Bronfman (either one) will struggle to get a GED once in prison. And the only smart thing Ms. Mack seems to have done is run like hell from your internet intrusions on her privacy…

        • You don’t have to type out useless blather. You are a copy and paste moron. You have absolutely no clue what is going to be coming down. The only reason you wanted to get into NXIVM was to stalk Mack. If Frank is serious about bringing up the quality of these reports he needs to get rid of you and Johnson as well as the NXIVM hangers that crap all over the comment section.

          • “The only reason you wanted to get into NXIVM was to stalk Mack.”

            What a stupid response by Petrov.
            The only requirement to join NXIVM was the willingness to blindly follow Rainier by handing over all your money.

            Petrol should lay off the vodka.

          • Sorry idiot, they took your money and booted your ass out for harassing Mack. She belonged to Raniere and you were expendable and no refund. Layoff the pot, you delusional perv.

  • Is Kook going to get a deal? Will she show her ankles? Did she ever have a penis? Inquiring minds want to know!

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


Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083
Email: frankparlato@gmail.com