As superseding indictment looms, Raniere’s attorneys want to see new search warrants of Raniere and Bronfman email accounts – and Salzman devices

Keith Raniere was he the studly he wanted women to believe him to be?

Is there going to be a superseding indictment?

There are indicators to suggest one may be forthcoming.

For instance, the Government does not want to reveal to the Defense everything contained in the latest trio of search warrants and affidavits used to obtain them.

Last month, when the Government turned over redacted version of new search warrants on Keith Raniere and Clare Bronfman’s email accounts  and Nancy Salzman’s electronic devices, entire pages of the warrants were excluded.

The redacted portions remain under seal until a further order from the Court.

The Government claims the sealing of portions of the warrants is due to their ongoing investigation.  The fact of an ongoing investigation is evidence that a superseding indictment is on the horizon. 

The Defense is seeking to view the search warrants in their entirety since within the warrants and the affidavits may lie crucial information needed to prepare for trial.

It may also yield hints as to what – if any – new charges the Feds may be contemplating bringing against the present NXIVM defendants and perhaps others.  

There are three search warrants in question:

  1. An email account of Keith Raniere:
  2. An email account of Clare Bronfman:
  3. Electronically stored information on electronic devices seized from Nancy Salzman’s home at 3 Oregon Trail, Waterford, NY. 

There have been two sets of search warrants on these email accounts and on Salzman’s devices.

In a search warrant, and the underlying affidavit presented to a judge to get the warrant, alleged crimes and arguments of probable cause are put forth to persuade the judge to sign the warrant.

Did the second set of search warrants put forth additional alleged crimes, expanding upon what is being searched for in already seized email accounts and devices? 

Here is the timeline so far:

January 18, 2018: The Government obtained a search warrant on Keith Raniere’s Yahoo email account based on certain alleged crimes.

March: The Government obtained search warrants based on alleged crimes for Nancy Salzman’s house and Clare Bronfman’s Gmail accountbased on alleged crimes.

That was the first series of search warrants.

The second series occurred in October.

October 15: The Government obtained additional search warrants – probably based on alleged crimes not named in the first search warrants – on Raniere and Bronfman’s email accounts.

October 24: The Government obtained an additional search warrant -probably based on alleged crimes not named in the first search warrant – on Salzman’s devices.

Since these latest search warrants were obtained three months after the Superseding Indictment, it is possible they are in furtherance of a new superseding indictment – that is yet to come – rather than to search for additional evidence of already charged crimes.

November 21: The Government provided redacted search warrants to Raniere, Bronfman, and Salzman.   

November 26: The defendants requested the Government produce unredacted versions of the search warrants. 

December 4: The Government filed a request for a protective order arguing that they do not seek a full unsealing because of the need to protect the integrity of their ongoing investigation, including the safety of witnesses, and prevent interference and other obstruction.

They seek to disclose the unredacted warrants one month prior to the date set for suppression motions. That date has not been set. Suppression motions are made by the defense to exclude certain evidence from being introduced at trial.

December 5: Raniere’s attorneys –  Marc Agnifilo and Terry Geragos – writing on behalf of Raniere, Bronfman, and Salzman – oppose the Government’s proposal.

They argue, “The Government’s ongoing investigation, whatever that may mean at this stage, cannot trump a defendant’s right to prepare for imminent trial.”

The current trial date is set for March 18, 2019. It was originally set for October. The superseding indictment in July pushed the trial date forward by five months.

The Defense writes, “the Government has used its purported ongoing investigation to disrupt established trial dates and is now using it to keep important information from the defense…. ‘[O]ne month prior to the due date for suppression motions’ … is not workable for the defense and is not in keeping with the practice of this District….  The defendants are facing serious racketeering and sex trafficking charges and should have the affidavits in order to conduct investigations into the charges against them.”

As to witness safety, Raniere’s attorneys point out that Bronfman and Salzman are subject to home detention “without the ability to communicate with anyone affiliated with NXIVM or anyone who was on the ‘Stripe Path.’ Raniere has been incarcerated in MDC Brooklyn and only communicates with his attorneys…  The released defendants have diligently adhered to their bail conditions and the Government could never put forward credible evidence that any witness has been in danger or has been threatened.”

The defense also seems to argue that the Government is being deceptive. They write that the second set of search warrant affidavits are “…based on information that the Government has already investigated (without the need for the devices and the email accounts) and is now being used as a basis to find more information in the defendants’ devices and email accounts.”

Raniere’s attorneys say the “defendants are concerned about not having sufficient time to independently investigate and challenge the search warrant applications if they are delayed until one month  before suppression motions are due, especially where we are only three months from trial.”

Of course, if there is another superseding indictment, the trial will be likely be postponed by months – perhaps to late summer or early fall of 2019. 

To date, the government has produced over 250,000 bates-numbered pages of discovery, and forensic copies of devices containing another approximately 1 million documents and approximately 1,000 audio/visual files for the defense. 

At the last hearing, on December 6th, the judge requested the defense attorneys to state on the record that they agreed this case is a ‘complex case.”

This suggests that, even without a superseding indictment, the trial date of March 18, 2019 may be postponed. 

Oral argument on the Initial Motions is scheduled for January 3, 2019.

Throughout the proceedings, the 800-pound gorilla in the courtroom is a looming superseding indictment. If this occurs, say perhaps in January, the arguments about unredacted search warrants being released now or later will be inconsequential.

A superseding indictment will reveal new charges – and perhaps new defendants. Reset the clock. Cause a brand new preparation for trial. 

In due course, the present unredacted search warrants will be produced for the defense.  There may be further search warrants.

At some point, the ongoing investigation will be over. All charges against all people involved with NXIVM will have been made.

The recent addition to the prosecution team of Assistant US Attorney Kevin Trowel – whose work has been in the Public Integrity Section of the US Attorney’s Office – is further evidence that a superseding indictment is coming and that there may be new defendants.

The time will come for the defense to truly bear down on the preparations of the defense of the NXIVM defendants.

Then the billable hours will truly roll.










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Frank Parlato

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4 years ago

I believe the new comment policy is great. It got rid of all a-holes.

Scott Johnson (@ScottTexJohnson)
Reply to  sk

I agree.

4 years ago

I love FR and have been following the whole NXIVM story on this site for the past year. New comments policy due to some undesirables has made it a bit of a snoozefest despite all the juicy new developments

4 years ago
Reply to  Zzzzzzz

– New comments policy due to some undesirables has made it a bit of a snoozefest despite all the juicy new developments

This comment is totally contradictory.

4 years ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Right Anon. Zzzzzz didn’t like the undesirable comments, but yet he now finds FR is a snoozefest without those undesirable comments?

4 years ago

Just wanted to comment of the photo of Keith. He looks pretty chunky here. And, then he decided to regurgitate the whole 1960’s vibe by playing the part of the second coming of Christ & John Lennon with spectacles. It’s interesting that he always wears his hair long and parted down the middle. I think he’s nothing but a PR slut at best. That’s what makes him tick. As time goes on, I’d be curious to see what his next “look” will be.

4 years ago

As to witness safety, Raniere’s attorneys point out that Bronfman and Salzman are subject to home detention “without the ability to communicate with anyone affiliated with NXIVM or anyone who was on the ‘Stripe Path.’
I would disagree. Clare is allowed to communicate with sister Sara. Nancy, as well as being able to have visits from indicted daughter Lauren, is also able to communicate with daughter Michelle and son-in-law Ben Myers. Both Clare and Nancy can get messages out in this way.

4 years ago

The day after Raniere was arrested in Mexico Federal agents raided Dr. Brandon Porter’s house in Clifton Park.
Both Keith and Clare had better worry about what the Feds found.

Brandon Porter’s home raided yesterday by FBI.

Scott Johnson (@ScottTexJohnson)

The judge has some important decisions to make in order to prevent an appeal, or the likely success of an appeal, based on giving the defense adequate time in which to prepare for trial. Delaying the trial even before the new indictments come out seems likely, although he may simply stall until the indictments come out in order to have a more convenient and comprehensive reasoning for delaying the trial.

4 years ago

There will be no preventing of an appeal. [deleted]

4 years ago

Any witness has reason to fear the Bronfman’s. Up to now Bronfman money has been used to punish those they deem to be enemies.
Sara is out there, free as a bird and is capable of much.

4 years ago

Good post Frank but lost much respect for your blog [deleted] Go back into your archives and find out about the Mexican cartel who tried to come in over the N. Falls border to seek you out. See my posts

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


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