Trial of Keith Raniere – a Lot to Report

Will Keith Alan Raniere take the stand in his own defense? Portrait by Marie White

We have now had three days of trial.

So much was learned about Nxivm, DOS and Keith Alan Raniere that it will take several posts to catch up. Throughout today and this weekend, Frank Report will publish some surprises that I think you won’t find anywhere else.

Thus far, we had opening statements of both the prosecution and defense and one witness, Sylvie, who has been examined and cross-examined.  Sylvie began on day one of the trial and continued through most of the second day.

The prosecution’s second witness, Mark Vicente, spent the last hour of the second day of trial and all of the third being examined by the prosecution. He has not been cross-examined yet. I anticipate this will commence on Monday.

As for names, some witnesses are using first and last names, others are using only first names, by order of the court.

The names of some non-witnesses – who are mentioned in testimony – are also being referred to by first names only.  For instance, someone named India was mentioned in court.

Of course, all who follow Nxivm know who India is and, for that matter, almost everyone who was connected to Nxivm knows who Sylvie is.

The Frank Report, for the sake of preserving the good faith of the trial, and to help assist the victims of Raniere in this highly stressful time, will adopt the policy employed by the court of using only first names of women whose last names are being shielded by the court, through the duration of the trial.

There are a number of elements for each crime with which Raniere is charged. In order to convict, the prosecution has to prove Raniere is guilty of all the elements of each crime.  For most crimes – and for all of those which Raniere is charged – one of the elements is “intent” to commit the crime.

From the defense’s perspective, the trial seems likely to boil down to Marc Agnifilo, Raniere’s lead attorney, trying to establish reasonable doubt, through cross-examination, that Keith had criminal intent.

His actions were done “in good faith.” He was trying to empower women and had unconventional ways of doing it.

The burden of proof is on the prosecution and we do not know how many witnesses they plan to call. The witnesses for the prosecution, beginning with Sylvie and Mark Vicente, are called to establish, among other things, the elements of alleged crimes and that Raniere had criminal intent. He only fooled people that his intentions were good.

At the rate they are going, I would guess the prosecution will call 20-25 witnesses.  We do not know their names in advance and have to wait until they are called. There is a pool of 125 potential witnesses, based on discovery information made available to the defense.

The trial is expected to last six weeks. This suggests that it should end sometime in mid-June.

It might be longer, however, should the defense choose to put on a case. We will not know that until the prosecution rests its case.   At this point, we do not know if the defense will call any witnesses, including Raniere.  If Raniere chooses to take the stand, I would suspect he would be on the stand for at least a week.

There is no trial today.  I am informed that Judge Nicholas Garaufis normally does not hold trials on Fridays, but has said he might make an exception in this case.  This suggest there will be 20 – 25 days of trial.

Because there are Muslim jurors, I understand the judge decided there will be no court for the end of Ramadan which is June 3 and 4 this year. This falls on a Monday and Tuesday.

Village Dianne is helping to cover the trial for Frank Report and Artvoice [And for Tony Ortega, who, though famous for reporting on Scientology, has been recently covering the Nxivm case].

In the past, Village Dianne has used only her first name in reporting events in court on Nxivm. Since she is now acting as an official correspondent for Frank Report and Artvoice, she is using her full name.

She is Dianne Lipson.

Next, will come her report on events of the trial yesterday and more Mark Vicente’s testimony.

Stay tuned. We will have a lot of new information to report before court resumes on Monday.

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Frank Parlato

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  • Here’s an interesting, perhaps illustrative case of a grifter who seemed convinced they did nothing really wrong – and went to trial, ending up with a longer sentence than they would have gotten in a plea bargain:

    A Fake Heiress Called Anna Delvey Conned the City’s Wealthy. ‘I’m Not Sorry,’ She Says.
    “Anna Sorokin was convicted by a Manhattan jury, but told The New York Times from jail that she did nothing wrong — and would do it all again.”

  • So there are Muslims on the jury.
    Whose bright idea is that-
    Keith Raniere-
    Here is what Islam teaches about women and sex slavery:

    Doctrine of Women
    Islamic women’s rights include:
    • The right for her testimony to be half that of a man.
    • The right to be beaten by her husband
    • FGM
    • Kafir women have the right to be sex slaves
    • The right to be in a harem

    • Islam has those doctrines because they descend from the Old Testament.

      You could say the same things about the other “peoples of the book”, Christians and Jews – except that you’d have to qualify it and say that it only applies to the extreme fundamentalists, such as the FLDS and some tiny sects of ultra-Orthodox Jews. The same goes for Islam – by no means all Muslims, and particularly not those living in this country, adhere to such outdated precepts. Islam may have an upswing of fundamentalism at the present, but the same thing has happened in Christianity in the past, even as recently as the era of the bloody Wars of Religion (which are to some extent still being fought in Northern Ireland), when among other things women were property in accordance with the Old Testament, and slavery was widespread and justified on the basis of the New Testament as well – both of which persisted well into the 19th century in this country.

      p.s. Frank – this is starting to stray into on off-topic bigotry that has no place here, and distracts from serious coverage of the trial.

      • AnonyMaker

        I warned several days ago that the ideal jurors from Raniere’s point of view were Muslims.
        Apparently the US DOJ does not understand Islamic culture and Muslim attitudes towards women and sexual slavery.

        May 6, 2019 at 4:32 pm
        The ideal juror for Keith Raniere is an Islamic male who grew up in Mecca or Medina.

        Don;t be socked if the Muslims find nothing wrong with Raniere’s sexual behavior.

        • Same with, say, FLDS from Utah, Arizona, and Texas. Would Warren Jeffs or any of his followers, or the LeBarons in Mexico and their followers (like the Romneys) many of whom maintain US citizenship, find anything wrong with his polyamory and pedophilia if they were on a jury, either-

          Joseph Smith’s youngest wife was not a whole lot older than the Prophet Muhammad’s. The Mormon church justifies it to this day by citing Old Testament examples such as that of Rebecca, who the Bible says was 10 when she was married. There are also people from a variety of smaller conservative or fundamentalist Christian cults, and even a few extreme ultra-orthodox Jewish ones, who might agree with that point of view as well.

          Again, it’s not about the specific ideology, it’s about the sort of abuses common to extreme groups of various types.

      • And Shadow if you’ve never read the Koran no worries bc it is near verbatim the Torah or the Old Testament…you have read one of those I presume- Please desist with the bigotries. ( and yeah I’ll prolly be singing a different tune if Raniere’s acquitted due to cultural acceptance of rape or sextortion or genital mutilation but these assumptions that all Muslims accept or want women to be thusly subjugated is wrong and does amount to bigotry.)

  • Frank… Your loyal readers deserve better and more frequent updates.

    Even 24 hours after Vicente’s testimony, not a lick of it appears here on FrankReport.

    Apparently, Frank is gonna wait 48 hours after something happens before reporting it, LOL.

    He’s gone from ‘journalist’ to ‘historian’.

    I encourage other loyal readers to speak up and demand that we get more frequent updates.

    Stop kissing Frank’s butt. 🙂

    Frank, you should consider renaming the FrankReport to:

    “Yesterday’s News”
    “Frank’s Untimely Reporting”
    “Claviger’s in Over His Head”


    Stop deleting posts which aren’t abusive, Mr. Claviger.

    You seem to be deleting posts which insult Frank, which Frank said he’d never do. Frank said he was fair game. Has that changed-

    • Funny stuff. Seems that if you dont know who the people are they are talking about. Are. Gets boring. Every person after there name is mentioned should have a small in parentheses who they are and how its related. Except for the obvious. As most people inc me dont know alot of these people.

    • How is that video possibly on-topic here-

      And as I’ve pointed out repeatedly, the subject is a red herring. Raniere’s pedophilia and misogyny if anything has its roots in the same sort of Western and Judeo-Christian Bible-based traditions that for instance spawned Mormonism – which just happens to have its roots in the “burned over district” of upstate New York that had been a hotbed of Christian religious revivals and fanaticism – and eventually the FLDS.

      I think that such irrelevant borderline bigotry does a discredit to this blog, and risks distracting from the more important issues. And if you want to get into conspiracy theories, it’s even the sort of thing that someone working to discredit Frank’s blog as a serious source of information, would want to have posted.

  • Frank,
    Why is the GR so slow on reporting about the trial- Other outlets have reported on day 3 already.

    Funny how many were all over the DOS testimony but not as many as day 3. Guess people want to report on the sex but not the other crimes.

  • Hi Frank. I am a nonconsensual DARPA brain subject & have so much spy tech in my body — brain chip, body area network, pelvic implants (for remote arousal), cochlear implant, tracking devices biomems, and materials for which I don’t have a name. Been tortured six years & counting. Literally have people surrounding me collecting my brain waves, grabbing screen shots & uploading them to…I presume DARPA. Will you be writing about ‘fright studies-’

    • Frank has already written about fright studies and will write more about them if it comes up in the trial. Don’t take a shower or bath, you could be electrocuted. Perhaps this is why Raniere is always so filthy.

  • Dianne Lipson’s report on Vicente on The Underground Bunker:

    ‘Vicente knew that Clare got in trouble for an incident where Clare got her father upset with the company. Vicente was told that Edgar Bronfman Sr. tried to destroy the company. This was a breach that Clare had to heal.’

    Dianne, didn’t Vicente go into detail about Clare’s breach of her Father’s confidence- Surely the prosecution could have elicited something more precise than this-

    Vicente seems to be talking a lot in order to say little.. Thanks for your reporting!

    • I don’t recall if anything else was said about this. If you are taking notes in court, you try to get as much as you can but you can’t get everything. I wouldn’t read to much into this answer that Vicente gave. He may have been guided by the government lawyer to talk about what he knew at the time, rather than what he knows now.

    • Diane’s article is great!

      Frankreport regular guests should check read it. It’s informative and interesting.

  • Geez, I thought graphic artists attending the trial weren’t supposed to create exact portraits of either the witnesses or the defendant! 😲

  • Yes, thank you!! Can you please tell us how many Muslims are there in the jury, and of they are men- Thank you!

    • ” how many Muslims are there in the jury, and of they are men- ”

      Even Muslim women are crazy.
      It is the Muslim women who practice Female Genital Mutilation on girls.
      Look up Linda Sarsour, a Muslim woman from Brooklyn who advocates Female Genital Mutilation.
      Sarsour is in many Youtube videos.

  • But thus far, it sounds like these were all consenting adults engaged in very weird behavior except for the 15 yr old who Raniere violated. Given he’s not charged with this deplorable behavior in these proceedings it seems like he may skate on these charges. It will be up to NDNY to see him held accountable it would seem.

    • Those who were deceived and manipulated into giving up “collateral” that could ruin their lives, were at that point subject to extortion, or human trafficking – which several of the co-defendants already plead guilty to, concluding and stating that the prosecution’s case on those charges is too strong for there to be a viable defense. I don’t think that the reports about Sylvie’s testimony make it clear how that was involved in her case, but coming testimony will probably prove how that was sort of the icing on the cake of a mix of coercive factors at work in the cases of all the DOS slaves, and so it’s important not to lose sight of the extortion that sealed it.

      And slavery is illegal – along with indentured servitude even if agreed to, which DOS more closely resembled. And not only do we recognize that 15 year-olds can’t consent, we also recognize that even adults are subject to undue influence by people in positions of authority or power such as psychological counselors, which is essentially the role that Raniere took on though without formal title or proper licensing – under New York law it is also statutory rape when a mental health provider engages in a sexual relationship with a patient undergoing therapy, regardless of age, as they are emotionally vulnerable.

    • I hate to say it
      “But thus far, it sounds like these were all consenting adults engaged in very weird behavior except for the 15 yr old who Raniere violated.”

      I agree.
      Raniere’s behavior is bizarre and deplorable.
      But thus far it appears that all of the women were consenting adults.
      Of course I am leaving aside the issue of the 15 year old girl.
      Government has no place in the bedrooms of the nation.

      If anything I would say that the NXIVM women were paying big fees to receive the sexual services of Raniere.
      The women were the “Johns” or customers and Raniere was their prostitute.
      Maybe that’s what they mean by “Female Empowerment.”

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,_Jr.

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083