Things are moving along.
A jury has been impaneled for Keith Raniere – 8 men and 4 women.
The task was neatly done by late Monday morning in Brooklyn Federal Court – as about 55 potential jurors were winnowed down to 12 plus 6 alternates.
Judge Nicholas Garaufis also ruled that the identities of women who claim to be have been DOS slaves will be not be made public.
Judge Garaufis apparently handed down the sealed ruling over the weekend but announced it on Monday. The details of his ‘anonymous witnesses’ order is not entirely clear, but, according to the New York Post, Garaufis alluded to some aspects of the decision in court ahead of final jury selection.
According to the Post the judge told prosecutor Moira Penza, “Just do first names, that’s easy.”
The judge “also agreed that witnesses would be allowed to have a ‘cheat sheet,’ as Penza called it, to make sure they’re properly identifying other witnesses during their testimony,” according to the Post.
At one point, the government had proposed using fake names for each witness.
In his argument against that, Raniere’s attorney Marc Agniflo wrote, “DOS had upwards of a one hundred members, at least thirty of whom may be discussed at this trial. Is the government really proposing that we assign a fake identity for each one? Short of providing the witness a glossary of which actual person goes with which fake name, the government’s proposal will not work as a practical matter and presents massive Sixth Amendment implications.”
As he furthered his argument, Agnifilo cited the Frank Report and other media for the reason that no anonymity was needed.
He wrote, “[D]ue to the massive press in this present case, including The Frank Report, which has published the names of countless numbers of DOS members, the true names of the witnesses are either already widely known or can be known in matter of seconds through a simple search of that website.
“Moreover, a number of the government witnesses and DOS members
“(1) worked together with Frank Parlato to smear Mr. Raniere and others on his blog, The Frank Report,
“(2) made themselves public by choice in The New York Times and several other news organizations, and
“(3) have been interviewed in the upcoming HBO documentary on this case.”
The trial begins tomorrow.
Viva Executive Success!