Relentless Collateral, Staging Fake Crimes, Standing Barefoot in Snow, Locked in Dungeons, Being Kicked on Ground, Paddled — Welcome to the Insane World of Lauren Salzman

Lauren Salzman

This is Part 15 of our series on Lauren Salzman, a Nxivm leader who testified in the trial of Keith Alan Raniere as a victim of her leader.

She pleaded guilty to racketeering and racketeering conspiracy – and is awaiting sentencing. Meanwhile, we have been studying whether she is more of a victim or a perpetrator.

Either way, she is one insane woman – to have done what she has testified to have done. This post may be the most insane of them all.

Listen carefully as she describes – often with rambling and nearly incomprehensible run-on sentences – as if it were normal – just about the most insane existence anybody could ever imagine.

It is the trial of Keith Alan Raniere. It is May 20, 2019. Assistant US Attorney Tanya Hajjar is examining Lauren Salzman.

Tanya Hajjar

Q   You testified that you provided collateral to join DOS?

A   Yes.

Q   At some point were you required to submit additional collateral?

A   Yes.

Q   Can explain that to the jury?

A   Well, initially,…  I was told that I need to provide something that would be, like, so significant that I would, like, rather die than share this information. So I provided the account of … an actual crime that I had been a party to and that implicated my parents, Keith, and a number of my friends. And… that collateral was rejected, and so then I was asked to provide naked pictures instead.

Q   And sometime after that, after you had joined DOS, were you required to commit collateral on a monthly basis?

A   Yes. … after I said I wanted to join, the idea was that you collateralized all areas of your life. So I had, you know, promised to — all my material possessions, all my finances, you know, all of that. And then Keith said — came to a meeting or asked at the meeting why we weren’t submitting monthly collateral, as if it had been a thing. And I guess it had been before I came, but I was unaware of it, and I learned that we were supposed to be submitting monthly collateral. He said that the idea of it and the importance of it was to keep the collateral current.

So like if I — and I think he gave an example of a car. I don’t recall specifically, but like my impression coming away from that was like that if I had a Toyota or something now, maybe I’m not as successful in my life now or that Toyota is not going to be as valuable to me in ten years and maybe even in ten years I could afford a Mercedes or something. So the Toyota wouldn’t have the same hold on me and ensure my secrecy and commitment. So we always had to keep the collateral current so that it would always have that influence, that effect that we would be unwilling to go against our commitment or — our commitment of staying forever and being in total obedience and secrecy.

Q   Did you submit monthly collateral?

A   I did, yes.

Q   What were some of the things you submitted as monthly collateral?

A   I mean, we were taking naked pictures, up close vagina pictures three times a week. So I was told that wasn’t considered collateral, but to me that was very weighty collateral because it was not something I would ever want anybody to see and there was a lot of it. But then I started promising more material possessions and things, but we were running out of what to do, and so we were asking each other and asking Keith for ideas of what you could do and when everything is already collateralized and he had suggested at one point like that, you know, we could get creative and he shared — he said you could even stage crimes. He told me a story of somebody who had staged a break-in to make it look like they had, like, broken into Clare’s house and taken something which she wasn’t home, but really the whole thing was a sham. But it was this idea that we could have things like criminally — you know, implications, criminal implications to our collateral.

Q   So the defendant suggested that there would be videos of these staged crimes?

A   Yes.

Q   And those videos were collateral?

A   Yes.


Lauren was shown a picture of the house below.

Image result for 9 milltowne drive in clifton park.

Q   Do you recognize this address?

A   Yes, 9 Milltowne Drive in Waterford.

Q   Was this an address that was associated with the DOS house?

A   Yes.


Q   Ms. Salzman, were there penitences or punishments in DOS?

A   Yes, there were.

Q   Can you explain that to the jury?

A   So penitence was a concept that we learned in the NXIVM curriculum, and it was the idea of taking on something painful or difficult to remind yourself of the importance and to build continuous self-awareness, in essence, of the importance of various things, whatever the important value was that you were seeking to uphold or actualize. And some of the penitences would be in line with, let’s say, you were — you know, mindless, or late a lot, you might take a penitence of doing some sort of like a 15-minute reality check, just 15 minutes, just come, be conscious of where you are, what your time frame is, and build awareness so you would stop being late. But also maybe that you were late and took on a penitence like taking a cold shower, for example, standing barefoot in the snow, that would be so uncomfortable that you would think twice before ever being late again.

So when I joined the sorority, they had shared with me that some of the penitence they had been doing was for failure like waking up in the middle of the night and do burpees. But when we failed a readiness, they had been taking paddlings. So we were to paddle each other with a piece — a leather strap, you know, naked butt for our readiness failures that we were doing.

Image result for burpees.
Burpees are a form of exercise. Women of DOS had to get up in the middle of the night from a sound sleep and do them.

Q   Did there come a time where the defendant discussed paddling with you?

A  He [phone] called into a meeting where we were paddling each other for our failures and we were taking penances for the readiness failures but then it became any item on our minute list with any of our projects or any of the things that we had committed to do that we were failing at we were taking paddling for, so we would take our naked picture and then everybody would take the number of whips that …  was commensurate with your failures and he called in and wanted to make sure that we were flicking our wrist hard enough or if you flick your wrist a specific way or if you really get the wrist into it, then it should really hurt and that’s what the paddling should be, it should be something that really hurts.

Lauren took lots of bare-assed paddling. Raniere made sure it hurt by instructing the women how to their wrist as they delivered the blows. In this text from Lauren to one of her slaves, she shows a picture of the kind of paddles she thinks work best.

Q   Were taking penances or punishments optional in DOS?

A   No, because he — I mean he was — we’re doing a vow of obedience and he’s saying “what are you going to do to fix it?” and you were required to fix it.

Q   And were some of these ways, including paddling, ways to fix it?

A   Yeah, it was viewed as a way to fix it, to make sure it never happens again. If you get hit hard enough, you start thinking twice about screwing up readiness [drills], not staying up all night [i.e. going to sleep] if you needed to get something done or whatever the thing was.

Q   Did you come to learn that the First Line [masters] had been paddled by the defendant?

The First Line slaves and their master in the center.

A   Daniella told me she had — she told me that she had been paddled by him and it was so painful and it was something I hoped to never happen to me, it didn’t sound like anything I ever wanted.

Q   And this is Daniella Padilla?

Government picture of Daniella Padilla. Raniere kicked her when she was on the floor – as a punishment for her being prideful.

A   Yeah. I was concerned about it.

Q   Did Daniella Padilla tell you about another punishment the defendant gave her?

A   She told me that she was in a prideful state and that he was trying to help her break the state and she had been on the floor and that he kicked her and that was also something that I never wanted to be in the situation. These things started to become scary for me. I was concerned about failing.

Q   And when you say “prideful state,” what does that mean, what do you understand that to mean?

A   Not being vulnerable, not being willing to acknowledge failures or wrong — like that she had failed or that she was wrong, that instead she was trying to be right or be arrogant and not be humble.

Q   You testified, Ms. Salzman, about a dungeon in the context of DOS?

A   Yes.

Q   Did the defendant tell you about a dungeon?

A   Yes, and Daniella as well, that they were making a dungeon in the basement and he spoke specifically about a cage, that there would be a cage and he said it was for the people who were the most committed to growth, they could go and get locked in the cage and my understanding of it was it was a type of surrendering, that to go in and to get locked in and to not know when whoever was in charge of it was going to let you out which also was something that I didn’t want to do, that was scary, and that I was concerned that I would have to do to demonstrate that I was one of the people who was committed to growth or that it would become something that we were taking on like as a penance for something.

Q   You say the basement?

A   Yes.

Q  Where is the basement?

A   Of 9 Milltowne Drive, of the sorority house.

Q   What did you picture the dungeon to contain, what did you understand it to have?

A   Well, Daniella tell me at one point that she had ordered a bunch of things for it and all the things that she described were like BDSM sex torture things.

Q   Like what?

A  Like handcuffs, she described the cage, nipple clamps. She talked about one thing that — I didn’t understand the concept specifically — but like tied your wrists and ankles and had some kind of net or something, I don’t — you know, all things that were sexual in nature.

Q  Did Daniella Padilla in fact order items for the dungeon?

A   She told me she did order them and that the weekend that everything about DOS became public [through the Frank Report] she told me that she had ordered the things and she was going to cancel the order so it didn’t become public that we had a dungeon or we were having the dungeon.

Q Did you have a conversation with the defendant about what would happen if you went in the cage or did you express to the defendant a concern?

A   It wasn’t specifically about what would happen much beyond it was you were just in there until they let you out but what I — you know, you would just be in there surrendering, it could be, you know, ten minutes, it could be an hour, it could be days, like you didn’t know how long it would be and that was the whole point of surrender but what I imagined was like being in there and having to go to the bathroom or something and then having to go through like that type of a humiliation which I think was the point of surrender, being willing to go through things that were vulnerable or humiliating or being willing to go through whatever as an experience of complete surrender and so that’s what I imagined and, you know, obviously not the kind of thing you’re hoping to experience. I wasn’t. I wasn’t hoping to experience that. It wasn’t something I wanted to do. And the fact that it was being linked with growth, like the most committed people to growth, so it became like if I didn’t want to do it, then I was one of those people that wasn’t committed to growth and that was a very hard thing to get my mind around and I didn’t believe that you couldn’t be most committed to growth unless you were willing to do BDSM things.



Is there anyone who doubts that Raniere’s dungeon idea was not about growth but sheer sadism?

And what can we say about Lauren?

She talks about this all – even her fear of it – as if this really was a lifestyle and something progressive and character building. Her shocking lack of awareness of Keith being evil – despite all he had done to her over the years – is astounding. She is truly defective in being able to detect sinister motives in another person. That may be because her own mother had less the beneficent designs on her over the years.

But imagine, going into dungeons, evidently without a restroom, not knowing when you would be let out – it might be days – knowing Raniere; being paddled viciously, with Raniere calling in while the paddling session is going on – to make sure they are hitting each other hard enough, standing barefoot in the snow, waking up in the middle of the night to do burpees, and not to mention assigning everything you own to Raniere – along with vagina pictures and a nice big burning brand.

All for growth?

It is good that Raniere himself will be permitted to experience some of the same kind of growth where he is now and where he is likely to be assigned after sentencing.

Happily, he will be in a dungeon. But we do know something Lauren and the other women did not know about their dungeon – we know Raniere is never likely to ever be let out of his.

Viva Executive Success!


Did Lauren take a beating?

Marie White enlarged this photo of Lauren Salzman which shows she has quite a scar on her shoulder – not unlike the scar she has on her pubic region. Was this caused by an accident or is this a mark made by Raniere?


See the other parts in our series>


Part 1:  How Lauren Salzman Described Her Branding Session

Part 2: Lauren Salzman Recruited Sarah Edmondson by Lying and Agreed Sarah Should Cuckold Her Husband if Raniere Commanded

Part 3: Lauren Salzman Describes Collateral She Got From Her Slaves, After Lying to Them About DOS

Part 4: Lauren Salzman Brands Five Slaves Lying to Them About the Brand; Becomes the Leading Recruiter of DOS

Part 5 Lauren Salzman and Her Slaves Got Bare-Ass Paddling

Part 6: Lauren Salzman Manages Her Slaves – With Cruelty and Insanity

Part 7: Lauren Salzman Describes Sex Life With Keith, Threesomes, Nude Photos, How She Kissed Another Man and How She Talked Other Women Into Staying With the Monster

Part 8: More Insanity: Lauren Salzman Touches Man at Volleyball; Keith Says ‘No Avatar Baby’

Part 9 Lauren Salzman Sent to Mind-F–k Gay Woman Who Did Not Want Keith as a Sperm Donor

Part 10 Lauren Salzman Describes DOS First Line Slave Masters, Admits She Wrote Letter Supporting Nicki Clyne’s and Allison Mack’s Fake Marriage

Part 11 Lauren Salzman Explains Raniere’s Creepy Readiness Drills 

Part 12 How Lauren Salzman Was Cheated Out of Motherhood by Keith Raniere and DOS

Part 13 Lauren Salzman Names Inner Circle and Keith’s Relationships With Them 

Part 14 Lauren Salzman Discusses Up Close Vagina Pics She, Allison Mack and Other DOS Slaves Took Together – Keith Was Having Sex With All of Them But Her

About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • I guess Keith wanting all those pix of vaginas means he didn’t do anal.
    Guess what, he’s doing anal now.

  • Might be scripted. She takes the Fall for everyone, knowing she’ll get leniency for testifying.

    But, honestly, the whole thing was just so F’ed up. Fall, no fall, whatever–who on earth could go for such royal horseshit.

  • The staged crime blackmail (er, collateral) scheme is especially cunning and appalling.

    That way, of course, the cult gets to rob Clare or whomever, have a scapegoat at hand for any real crimes of a similar nature that occur and revel in the sadistic joy of punishing the accused “faux” criminal. PLUS, Vanguard gets to once again rescue Clare from the clutches of evil forces out to steal her gilt. Wow.

    I refuse to believe that Lauren — who was her recruit, Daniella Fernandez’s, cruel jail keeper over Daniella’s alleged thievery and/or unauthorized infatuation with Lauren’s brother-in-law Ben Myers — and/or Nancy didn’t dream up some of these insane schemes that were useful for the Salzman’s own purposes in their own interests to deflect suspicion from themselves for the yet unprosecuted crimes they perpetrated with Raniere long before DOS started.

    The only bit of sympathy I can muster for Lauren Salzman is the fact that she’s taking the fall for her entire fam. — except in doing so she, no doubt, can still look forward to a rich reward so long as the other Salzman criminals remain unpunished.

    That’s not an apology, that’s not remorse or regret, that’s another con scheme only Nancy Salzman (without Raniere, mind you) could have come up and lawyered up with.

    • Agree. It does appear as if Lauren is taking the fall for her entire family . Nancy is the source of more information.

  • Maybe Lauren was worried about how long some one could be confided to the cage given What she saw with Dany.
    This also tells me she was very aware she was imprisoning someone. Regardless of how Keith treated her, she should be responsible for her actions. She helped to imprison another person. She needs to be held accountable .

  • Escape stories from other cults show that there is a point for even the some of most high-ranked, die-hard, dedicated members, when they just can’t take the abuse anymore.

    Lauren was starting to doubt that BDSM was really the path to “growth.” Maybe she would have woken up on her own someday. I’m glad Frank accelerated the process.

  • Here on the Frank Report, we are talking about people who used collateral to control the actions of others. This recent tweet by Flowers and some of the other craziness on her twitter feed look like she’s engaged in the same thing. Is there any way we can contact the people she’s referencing and warn them? No one replies to her tweets so they may not know they’re in danger.

  • Frank – Somewhere on here, you recently commented that it wasn’t your decision to blur the faces of people like Mark Vicente in that ID program you were a part of. What reason did the people in charge or their legal folks give for doing it? Since Vicente testified and has given interviews and appeared on several other programs, why would he need to be blurred out?

    • I don’t know the reason. I think it was done by legal. Perhaps it was haphazard, not unlike the feds did in the case against Raniere – where some of the women were first name only and some were first and last and some who were first name only were at other part of the trial first and last names. I would not have blurred out any faces — that came with the final editing – where the color was tweaked and some music was added. I was not part of the final process. I had approved the film, its sequence, the scenes etc. for accuracy – but did not involve myself in the final editing – leaving that to experts. Someone decided to blur out a few faces. To me, it was not worth a special effort to find out why legal wanted that.

  • There is no doubt growth was involved, the growth of Raniere’s control over the DOS and non-DOS women, and to a lesser extent, men. The women were told it was for their own personal growth, that is the big NXIVM lie.

    I do find it amazing none of them snapped out of it, but given a little more time, perhaps some of them would have, similar to the NXIVM 9 a decade earlier, but the Frank Report interrupted that probable sequence of events.

    • Don’t Edmondson, and Vicente, count as having snapped out of it? And then there was court testimony about at least one slave wanting out, though I can’t recall exactly how that related to the timeline of the public disclosures about DOS.

      It’s amazing that as many of them stayed in as long as they did, but it also seems to me that Raniere had finally pushed things too far and the situation was on its way to collapse regardless of what turned out to be the particular tipping point. You may well be right that there would have been some group defection before long.

      • If I’m recalling correctly, Edmondson went to Frank, who told her to go to the NYT.

        If Frank didn’t already have his website going, with all of the dirt he already had on NXIVM, who knows where it would have gone. Perhaps Edmondson and Vicente would have walked away and stayed quiet, because they were afraid of Bronfman’s lawsuits. It could have taken several years before a mass defection occurred, and even then it could have landed like a thud like the NXIVM 9 did. Frank was the catalyst.

    • I mean, at some point when you’re providing constant up close shots of your vagina for your leader a light bulb would go off??

      • One would think. I wonder if the forests covering up the money shots helped them rationalize going along for the ride?

        I guess if Keith could have awkward group masturbation sessions with his male chums, it’s only fair that the women got to enjoy some awkward group nudity. And no need to remember the ruler.

    • Wow!!!!!!

      Scott made a genuinely good point. I say my compliment with the utmost sincerity.

      I learned tonight that even mentally impaired adults can rise above their retardation, and make valuable contributions to the public discourse.

      Thanks Frank Report for teaching me the error of my ways.

      I bet Scott has all sorts of interesting insights into diaper rash.

  • The last two nights on Lifetime – R Kelly the reckoning part II has been on – Episode three is on tonight at 8- I am sure they will show the other two episodes prior to the final one airing so anyone can binge watch it all.

    R Kelly used many of the same control techniques as Raniere to keep his girls in line. Even the concept that Love is Pain is mentioned multiple times by the women who escaped.

    Which brings me to wonder: Did the perps: Raniere and Kelly (and lets throw in Epstein) have similar traumatic events in their childhood that triggered this concept that love is pain. In Kelly’s case it was childhood sexual abuse.

    PS. Later this year Lifetime is doing a series on Epstein. I will add that the R KELLY series is much better than the made for TV movie Lifetime did based on Catherine Oxenberg’s Captive.

    • Women and men with a strong shame response, which is a majority of human beings subjected to strict religious upbringing and/or sexual abuse in their formative years of development are prone to manipulation tactics like you discussed with R Kelly and Raniere. Low self esteem combined with strong emotional reactions trumps critical thinking skills EVErY TImE. Not to mention the frontal lobe of the human brain, the part in charge of objective reasoning and critical thinking skills, doesn’t fully develop until age 21, making teenagers the emotionally volatile hormonal people they are stereotypically known to be, as well as LItErAllY not having the critical thinking skills needed to tell these manipulative pieces of shit to move along.

  • This is one of Frank’s articles on Lauren Salzman, where I find it impossible not to pity her.

    However, she still deserves 3-5 years for Dani’s confinement. Confining anyone is tantamount to kidnapping.

  • Lauren agreeing to the blackmail scheme of so-called collateral makes her a co-offender in the starkest terms possible.

    The part, above, where she recounts submitting collateral about criminal acts her mother and Raniere committed is quite bizarre. These people seemed desperate for ways to expand their orgy of humiliation.

    When I’m feeling sympathetic toward Lauren, I see her as the subject of a forbidden experiment– her mother raising her to accept “black” is “white,” “up” is “down,” etc. But she says plenty in her testimony to indicate she knew she was committing criminal acts.

    In any event, I hope that, once out of prison, none of the co-traffickers are allowed to profit from writing about their crimes, since I’m sure some of them will claim they were victims of Raniere’s mesmerism.

    • They were desperate to come up with new blackmail (aka collateral) ideas. How many months could you think of about yourself?

      Actually, writing about their experiences would help educate others, help them recover, and keep them away from the rest of society.

  • You know you’re in a cult when….

    “there would be a cage and he said it was for the people who were the most committed to growth”

    You’re right, Frank, this is some of the craziest stuff, and it’s hard to imagine how Salzman could have participated in it month after month and year after year without starting to realize that it was just Raniere playing out his fixations and fantasies, such as BDSM. Even if there were some point to isolation, all that would be required is a closet, not equipment from a sex shop.

    The only parallel I can think of is Scientology’s Sea Org, but there they keep thousands of people working 18 to 20 hours a day under intense pressure, sleep deprived and underfed, with almost no vacations or breaks of any sort, so that members don’t even have time or energy to reflect on their situation – and they even have provisions for dealing with anyone who does start to doubt, or try to leave or escape. It doesn’t seem that Raniere’s inner circle and DOS slaves were in quite such a coercive environment, so it’s a bit harder to explain other than that it may come down to the particular weaknesses and vulnerabilities of the relatively small number of people involved, or else that they themselves were also too pathological to see anything wrong with what they were involved in, including what they were in turn doing to others; Mack, for instance, spent a couple of months away doing a play, along with several other interludes, and yet remained gung-ho.

    • NXIVM and Scientology’s Sea Org are very similar, both require maximum effort which is never good enough. It’s the same with MLM scams, although more voluntary in nature. With NXIVM and Scientology, you are committing to things supposedly to improve yourself and make the world better. With MLM scams, you are reaching for financial independence, and the “system” is designed to make it virtually impossible to follow 100%, and then the upline tries to put the guilt trip on people who can’t do all of the things prescribed and place the blame on them for not succeeding. Most people believe this tripe, when the real issues are the MLM is an illegal pyramid (lack of retail sales to non-distributors) and RICO fraud (secret and massive profits made from the system “tools,” which include various meetings, books, audio/video recordings, phone apps, voice mail, website access, etc.). All three use peer pressure and include massive lies, along with a gradual introduction into their “deals,” aka the slow frog boil analogy.

    • Aside from Lauren beginning to find it “scary” along with being locked in a cage, I want to know what Lauren felt hearing that her beloved Keith had kicked a woman while she was lying on the floor. She has been told a friend, while lying on the floor, has been kicked by him. Not once did she say she was outraged by any of it. It’s all so acceptable to her.

      • I feel like Lauren could overlook all that because she was/is?? so desperate to be loved it creates a state of disassociation. Like, she’s living for this piece of shit to want her again because she has some serious abandonment and self esteem issues that she needs to heal. That’s not to say she didn’t enjoy some of the things she did. But still, she was manipulated. It’s disgusting when people like Raniere can see people’s deepest emotional wounds and then twist them for their own perverse pleasure. He belongs exactly where he is.

    • Raniere did perform some of the beatings himself. I think Raniere has already experienced several similar episodes of that picture, and he will probably experience many more, along with the rest of the NXIVM SEX/SIX.

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.

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