Raniere Trial Brings out Best and Worst in Others – like Barbara Bouchey and Toni Natalie

Toni Natalie was Keith Raniere's top harem woman in the 90s. Barbara Bouchey was his top harem woman in the 2000s. This is a composite of paintings by the fabulous MK10ART.

For those of us who have been dealing with Keith Raniere for many years, we really didn’t learn all that much new about him during his 27-day trial.

We knew before the trial started that he was an egomaniac and a narcissist who didn’t have all the skills he claimed to have.

We also knew he was a conman who didn’t accomplish all the achievements he took credit for (Seriously, who believed that a 5’6″ white guy with club feet could tie the New York State record for the 100-yard dash?).

MK10ART’s brilliant painting of Keith Raniere.

We knew he craved younger, thinner women who would do whatever he told them to do.

We knew he was the kind of person who always blamed someone else for their mistakes.

We knew he was a pussy who would not do well in prison (Trust me on this one: having spent 28 months at MDC, I can assure you that, regardless of whatever sentence he gets, Ranire will very likely die in prison).


What the trial did do, however, is expose the best and worst in some others.

Barbara Bouchey Told Her Truth

Take Barbara Bouchey for example.

For Barbara Bouchey, Keith Raniere was a special kind of boyfriend – and she still believes their days in Nxivm were like Camelot.

While we (and many readers) have castigated her for insisting that there was some good in the NXIVM “tech”, she maintained that stance throughout – and even after – the trial.

Her opinion wasn’t affected by all the sordid evidence and testimony that was presented concerning Raniere’s deviance and perversions.

She continued to insist that when she was Raniere’s girlfriend, there was some good and decency in him.

She didn’t go around trying to convince others of her opinion.

She just answered questions that were asked of her as openly and honestly as she always does.

She knew there would be a backlash every time she said anything positive about Raniere or his “tech”. But she did it anyway.

Barbara attended nearly [or perhaps] the entire trial – even though doing so had to interfere with her financial planning business.

Barbara was there to see that justice was done to a man that has caused her great harm.

But she was also there to tell what she believes to be the truth about Raniere and his beliefs.

I disagree with Barbara on several matters concerning NXIVM and Raniere.  But I respect the fact that she doesn’t change her opinion depending on who she’s talking to.


Toni Natalie Focused On Undercutting Other Journalists & Media

Toni Natalie was also there for the entire trial.  But unlike Barbara, Toni was there to accomplish several things for herself.

Toni Natalie in front of the Metropolitan Detention Center where her former boyfriend, Keith Raniere, currently resides. 

First and foremost, she was there to promote a podcast and a book that she and her partner, former Metroland reporter Chet Hardin, have been working on for several months (They’re supposedly still looking for someone to finance – or sponsor – the podcast).

Secondly, Toni was there to discourage people from working with others who are working on NXIVM-related projects.

Toni bad-mouthed the two directors behind the upcoming HBO docuseries about NXIVM – Emmy-winning and Oscar-nominated directors Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim (Control Room, The Square, The Great Hack) – and advised others not to work with them because they were “untrustworthy”.

She even told Karim and Jehane that they would have to go through her if they wanted to talk to me – which was and is total bullshit.

Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim

She also bad-mouthed the CBC “Escaping NXIVM” podcasts that, during its first year, had focused on Sarah Edmondson’s escape from the cult. She encouraged others not to appear on future episodes of the show.

She also bad-mouthed Sarah’s upcoming book – and suggested that she would use the book to “gloss over” the period of time she was involved with NXIVM.

Sarah Edmondson 

And to top things off, Toni made up lies about Frank Parlato: e.g., that he had threatened to release Nicole’s collateral unless she gave him the names of other DOS members. In reality, Frank advised Nicole to go to the FBI – which she did. He also turned over all the collateral he had received concerning her – and other DOS slaves – to the FBI.

Toni even told several court observers that Frank would have been arrested had he been in the courtroom on the first day that Nicole testified – a total fabrication that was proven to be such when Frank showed up in court several days later.

When Toni was confronted about these lies concerning Frank, she first denied making any such statements – and claimed the person who told me about them was lying. Later, she claimed that she had been confused about Nicole’s testimony – and misunderstood about her statements concerning Frank’s impending arrest.

MK10ART’s portrait of Frank Parlato. Nicole credited Frank in court with helping her to see the light and get out of Nxivm. Frank was also responsible for Nicole going to the FBI. Toni twisted Frank’s worthwhile efforts into an egregious lie that she seems to have spread to encourage others to work with her and not with Frank. 

And when the trial was over and the cameras were rolling in the park across from the federal courthouse, it was Toni – and not the former DOS slaves who had appeared as witnesses at Raniere’s trial  – who took it upon herself to rush up to the microphones and refused to abandon them until the last camera crews started shutting down.


I’ve been in “only-one-survivor” combat with Raniere and his minions for more than 14 years – and for many of those years, I considered Toni to be a trusted ally.

But while I knew that taking Raniere (and a few others) down was just one battle that we won, Toni decided this was the time to monetize her involvement with him – and suddenly changed several aspects of her involvement with Raniere (e.g., She does not disclose that she was the top recruiters in the early days of NXIVM – a fact that we’ll be elaborating on in future posts).

Over the course of the past few months, I’ve discovered that Toni – much like Raniere – was a master at compartmentalizing.

But, unfortunately for Toni, I’ve seen this movie before – and I know that if you talk openly with everyone, the truth will come out.

And the truth here is that Toni has greatly diminished the role that she played in getting NXIVM launched – and equally exaggerated her role in taking NXIVM down.

I wish Toni and Chet the best of luck with their book and their podcast.

I just don’t know whether either of those ventures should be classified as “fiction” or “non-fiction”.


About the author

J.J. O'Hara


Click here to post a comment

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

  • Both women in the picture at the top were invited on my radio show shortly after Raniere was arrested. They both declined. I believe both knew they may expose lies they had already made or would make in the future.

  • J.J. O’Hara Thank you for putting these observations out here. That’s a lot of food for thought.

    Wow to the chutzpah described re Toni Natalie’s networking the courthouse environment like an interfering and not necessarily truthful busybody. It was not well-concealed. I remember watching a clip of Catherine Oxenberg on the scene post-conviction, weeping with relief as Toni stood right there with a look on her face that said, “I’m next. Time to hear more about meeeeee.”

    It’s a lot worse than merely vulgar to speak on your behalf (and behind your back, of course) so controllingly, acting as if she were your agent or representative to try blocking you and others from talking to one another. That’s a shame and has to be pretty damn disappointing.

    Natalie seems to have valuable info and insights, but if she wants to roll down & dirty, she is messing up her worth as a credible or verifiable source.

  • Toni is the type of person that likes to Knock Other People Down to make herself feel better and seem more important.

    It is totally a Toni Natalie thing to knock Frank, Sara, and anyone else. That is just who she is.

    Don’t take it personally. She does that with Everyone.

  • Good post, Joe.

    Regardless of my past comments about the computer stuff, I do not support Toni Natalie’s fabrications, which seem designed to turn herself into Joan of Arc.

    I also never realized the true extent of her lies and contradictions told to various people during the trial.

    I just never realized that she was SO self serving and self aggrandizing.

    Liars tend to tell so many competing lies (to so many different people) that they can’t keep track of their lies after being confronted.

    My opinion of Toni has forever changed for the worse.

    Before today, I viewed Toni as an opportunistic woman who was looking to rewrite history a bit.

    But as of today, I now view Toni Natalie as a person with the most self-serving intentions possible.

    I now view her role in the computer case more harshly, as I now believe she probably did purposely lie to people.

    I hope that both you and Heidi (and others) continue to expose the bullshit in Toni’s new book and her future podast, that is, if she and Chet the Clown ever get a sponsor.

    …and please stop wishing her (and Chet the Clown) good luck with her new book and podcast.

    I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and I have been told (by him personally) that Toni’s book will not sell very well and that in Jesus’ mind, Toni is a twat. 🙂

    In all seriousness, I get it that you’re not vindictive. However, you don’t have to be vindictive to hope that Toni the Italian twat isn’t successful in rewriting history.

    • Have no fear, Joe is extremely vindictive, think about his recent (and flawed) remarks about Raniere not getting treated fairly before and during the trial. It was okay with Joe, because he was willing to make an exception with Raniere. I think the “good luck” line was sarcastic.

      Also, Natalie could start her podcast on my radio/podcast show. In fact, I invited her (and separately BB) on my show over a year ago and they both declined. Whenever you and your pal Jesus Christ would like to be on my show, you are welcome to be on it. The only person on the planet who has been invited and then disinvited is Heidi.

  • I was a member of the press corps that attended the entire Raniere trial. And I can confirm that Toni spent a great deal of her time warning people not to appear on other media projects. I was one of those people.

    Toni also spent a lot of time explaining to various members of the press corps the important role that she played in taking down NXIVM. But for those of us who had been covering this story for years, we knew a lot of her claims were false.

    Toni thinks she fooled a lot of people while she was at the trial. She didn’t.

  • So the bottom line is that NXIVM attracts the worst kind of grifters and vipers.
    Broken people out for a quick buck and some fame.
    NXIVM is a truly inspiring American success story.
    A self-help group filled with female P. T. Barnums.

    Barbara Bouchey dreams of returning to NXIVM to milk it of more money
    Toni Natalie sees NXIVM as a meal ticket and a path to play the hero.

    And you can bet that Nancy and Lauren will return to NXIVM as the mother-daughter grifter team.
    Oil up the cash counting machine, gals. There’s more money to launder.
    All Nancy and Lauren are capable of doing is grifting.
    Nancy and Lauren will only stop the grifting when their coffins are nailed shut.

    Clare and Sara are dreaming of retaking the reins and NXIVM to make the world a better place for con artists.
    And their servant Allison will be determined to help empower women through sex trafficking.
    And Nicki is working behind the scenes to keep NXIVM gassed up and ready to go.

    And the Mexican elite intends to revive NXIVM to use for immigration fraud and money laundering.

    And the US Government will pat itself on the back for a job well done.

    • “Nancy and Lauren will only stop the grifting when their coffins are nailed shut.”

      They won’t need to because Nancy knows where the money is.

      The money found in her house was just her loose change.

      It was money she could afford to lose.

      “Be a good boy and rub some lotion on my shoulders Pierre; nobody else has your touch.”

      • Yes, Nancy Salzman herself has quite a sex drive.

        The author of this post, Joe O’Hara, wrote about how forward Nancy was with him signalling that she was open and available for sex.

        “One of the early signals that Nancy sent out was that she was available for a sexual relationship. She did this quite openly even though she knew I was living with someone at the time (She also voiced her unrequested opinion that the woman that I was with was “really not a good match” for me – or words to that effect). I never followed up on Nancy’s offer.”
        Joe O’Hara

        Joe also said that Nancy, like her grifter daughter Lauren, has expensive tasteds.
        “Prior to the party, I was given a list of presents that Nancy was hoping to receive at the event (Kind of like a wedding registry list – but with only high-end items on it). I went with a bottle of fairly expensive wine.”

        People who have expensive tastes usually end up running out of money no matter how much they have squirreled away
        I suspect that Nancy and Lauren will be back to their grifting ways before too long.
        They know nothing else.

        • Grifters tend to be poor planners, unable to really face the possibility that their scheme might implode.

          Bernie Madoff not only apparently didn’t stash any of the billions that went through his hands, much less plan for a safe place to flee, but didn’t even do a good job of setting his wife up with some protected assets.

          Jeffrey Epstein came back from France, which might well not have extradited him on pedophilia charges – they’ve provided refuge for Roman Polanski on similar counts, and also only gave up charismatic killer Ira Einhorn (whose flight was partly funded by the Bronfman girls’ then-aunt Barbara Bronfman) after letting him hide for many years and then making extradition almost impossible – when he had child pornography and a fake passport sitting in a safe waiting to be found by the FBI.

          I doubt Raniere and Salzman planned any better, or they’d already be somewhere that doesn’t extradite to the US, enjoying stashed money. The money left carelessly strewn around Salzman’s house suggests what they call a disorganized criminal, not a cunning one.

          • “Bernie Madoff not only apparently didn’t stash any of the billions that went through his hands, much less plan for a safe place to flee, but didn’t even do a good job of setting his wife up with some protected assets.”

            Bermie Madoff was a unique case..
            For a Ponzi scheme to work most of the money has to be funneled back to the early investors who give word of mouth to the notion that it is a legit investment.
            The later investors end up holding the bag.
            Once the Ponzi collapses the courts have to figure out which investors were unjustly enriched in the scheme.
            Then the courts have to claw back the unjust enrichment.
            As you mentioned Ruth Madoff this year agreed to pay back some of the money she received.
            After ten years plus of litigation all of the investors end up getting a haircut so to speak and no one is made whole.
            And several banking institutions that enabled Madoff’s Ponzi had to pay large amounts of restitution.

            There have been attempts for the recovery of funds from the Madoff investment scandal. As of October 2018, the Madoff Trustee, Irving Picard, reported recoveries and settlement agreements of $13.294 billion, of which $11.275 billion had been distributed or committed to victims of Bernard Madoff.

          • Madoff’s Ponzi scheme was pretty typical, except for its size and the veneer of respectability he brought to it. You’d have to search pretty hard to find any operator of a fraud like that, who managed to escape with enough money to live off of – it’s much the same mentality as gambling, they expect to somehow come out ahead rather than have to face the consequences.

            I’ve seen other cases where wives were set up with property and assets in their own names, nominally funded with legitimately made money (which Madoff had plenty of), that survived attempts to seize it. He also didn’t set up his kids to survive the collapse of the scheme, and they literally ended up dead.

            Scientology “reverend” Reed Slatkin ran one of the largest Ponzi schemes prior to Madoff. He also ended up in jail, and an early grave.

          • Madoff’s scheme was so large (at least 20 billion dollars) and lasted for so long (over 20 years) that Ponzi schemes should be renamed as Madoff schemes in his honor) as in he Made Off with the money in a Madoff scheme.

    • Shadowstate1958,

      I agree in theory regarding your observations, however…….

      ……..What about capitalism?

      What’s wrong with making a buck by writing a memoir?

      There is so much crime in the United States the government can only handle so much.

      • There are actually laws preventing criminals from making a buck off of their crimes through writing memoirs.

        They are called Son of Sam laws and they exist at both the Federal and State levels.
        Here is the Federal Son of Sam law:

        Citation: 18 U.S.C.S. § 3681 (Lexis 2000)
        History: Enacted in 1984.TITLE 18. CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
        18 USCS § 3681 (2000)

        § 3681. Order of special forfeiture

        (a) Upon the motion of the United States attorney made at any time after conviction of a defendant for an offense under section 794 of this title or for an offense against the United States resulting in physical harm to an individual, and after notice to any interested party, the court shall, if the court determines that the interest of justice or an order of restitution under this title so requires, order such defendant to forfeit all or any part of proceeds received or to be received by that defendant, or a transferee of that defendant, from a contract relating to a depiction of such crime in a movie, book, newspaper, magazine, radio or television production, or live entertainment of any kind, or an expression of that defendant’s thoughts, opinions, or emotions regarding such crime.

        Even pro-Capitalist Republicans like Donald Trump don’t want convicted criminals to profit from their crimes through memoirs.
        So-Called Nice Guy, would you have allowed O. J. Simpson to profit from murdering his ex-wife and Ron Goldman?

        If Allison Mack needs money, I understand that Goodwill is hiring workers.

    • Shadowstate,

      Real life is not a John Wayne movie where the bad guys pay, the good guy rides of into the sunset, and women act like women.

      Unfortunately in the real world nice guys finnish last and pieces of sh*t like Bill Clinton, Jeff Bezos, Donald Trump, and Mark Zuckerberg are deities….

      I am shocked that your dad did not impart a more cynical outlook of the world…

      I personally am still shocked and ecstatic that Keith Raniere is finally behind bars.

      Be thankful for the justice fact that justice triumphed.

      The NXIVM criminal enterprise pales in comparison to other criminal organizations such as the HSBC criminal enterprise. HSBC financed/launder money for terrorist organizations and drug cartels.

      You should be more outraged that the Obama White House let HSBC of the hook…


      Not to mention the current Secretary of the treasury Steve Mnuchin.



      Be thankful that Raniere will be behind bars for life!!!!

  • “She also bad-mouthed the CBC “Escaping NXIVM” podcasts that, during its first year, had focused on Sarah Edmondson’s escape from the cult. She encouraged others not to appear on future episodes of the show.

    She also bad-mouthed Sarah’s upcoming book – and suggested that she would use the book to “gloss over” the period of time she was involved with NXIVM”

    That’s why I love and admire Toni…She is right!

    Especially with Sarah’s book! She will make more money off the victims she made (this include Allison).
    Let’s forget the almost 20 years of supporting Nxivm and focus only on the last week when she left, right?

    She helped the cult to extend in Canada, she supported their teaching (whether she like Raniere or not is irrelevant…she supported his teaching gladly (for as long as it paid).

    “Nicole credited Frank in court with helping her to see the light and get out of Nxivm. Frank was also responsible for Nicole going to the FBI. Toni twisted Frank’s worthwhile efforts into an egregious lie that she seems to have spread to encourage others to work with her and not with Frank. ”
    Not exactly…It sounded like blackmail if you ask me…
    She pointed out that she felt like being collateralized on one side to be collateralized on the other side…

    Now I’m sure it wasn’t Frank’s goal to make it feel like that …but in court, she didn’t “credited him with helping her to see the light and get out”

    Also, as far as we saw, she left before talking with Frank so she was out and he didn’t help her…
    Now for the rest, he did have an impact on the other members who left the cult after this (so even if i’m hypercritical against you, Frank, kudos and thanks for this).

    • Nicole may have gotten out before she knew Frank, but I believe Frank is the one who told her to go to the FBI, and I consider that to be helping her. I don’t get the collateral on both sides, there was only one side to the collateral/blackmail, and that came from NXIVM.

  • Anyone know if there are any local (Haldmoon) massage therapy businesses associated with Nxivm? Been checking out old posts, but the names/owners of property of nx businesses are difficult to figure.

    Everyone deeply involved with esp/nxivm shares the same narcissistic tendencies. It’s a spectrum. And the “outers” are fighting it out while the remaining faithful laugh at them and look to the “succesor.” If you think there isn’t an attempt to keep the community going up here, you just don’t get it.

    I have to give Frank Report a huge thank you for exposing Nxivm/dos/. But let’s be clear: the Salzmans and friends are still meeting. And it is really creepy to see it happening still as these are people who will cry and play the victims in front of the judge, admitting that they’ve “done wrong” while tooling around the area still trying to support and continue the community.

    It just isn’t over. We live here and see it.

    • People like the Salzmans probably still believe in the “good” in NXIVM – and there could indeed be a bit of feel-good talk therapy at the core of it. If it follows the pattern of Scientology, there will be some milquetoast offshoots that will attract the interest of former adherents until they get bored with meeting and chatting, without a guru, hype and a grand “mission.”

      If you’re concerned about those who might re-create an abusive organization, then locals like you should push for Albany-area authorities to prosecute the various crimes of hardcore NXians like money laundering and immigration violations, which ought to deal with the remaining worst actors of the old regime.

      • “People like the Salzmans probably still believe in the “good” in NXIVM”

        Nancy and Lauren are grifters who understand that NXIVM can bring in mucho dineo.
        Grifters gonna grift.
        They know nothing else.

        • Based on what I’ve studied and observed about other frauds and cults, and their various players, I think there’s a good chance that Salzman does believe that elements of NXIVM like EMs have value. I think it’s important to understand the role that may have had in the creation and operation of NXIVM, and whatever may come next.

  • I thought your war was on Keith and his accomplices. Not with Toni Natalie who has helped you a lot. The same as many others have done. She has never ever spoken a bad word about you and in fact, interfiered with the fbi so something could be done for them not to attack you. It’s a pity to see how short your memory is Frank or how you lack of memory how others have helped you… I bet you even sold pictures others took the risk of giving to you….. I remember myself all the information I gave you and never expected anything in return because I thought we did have a common interest. To help the victims of the cult. But this… this really is disappointing to read.

    • Hi Toni!

      Or is that Chet the Clown? 🙂

      Glad you could make it here, even if it’s in drag. 🙂

      • “Interfiered” – lol!!! This is obviously Toni. Chet I truly feel sorry for you, months of writing up a story of lies. Although if you’ve spent a lot of time with Toni you must be seeing many red flags. Nothing she says adds up, or makes sense under the lightest probing or scrutiny? Many of the telltale signs of a fraudster?

  • Who is the woman in the center of the pic at the top of the page?
    She seems too fat and ugly for Keith’s harem.

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