It really boils down to the math.
This whole lawsuit business – the Glazer lawsuit against Nxivm – it’s all in the math.
I will explain shortly.
But first, let’s set out the questions.
This is done for me, happily, by our favorite future curmudgeon, Bangkok.
In response to my article, More Crimes of Clare Bronfman – As Alleged in Glazer Lawsuit – She Financed, Procured, Groomed and Provided Sexual Servants for Raniere, Bangkok raises some interesting questions and makes a clear point – at what monetary level will this lawsuit be settled.
Clearly, Bangkok understands the delicate conflict of interest between the lawyers – getting 33.3 percent of whatever money they take in and the fact that there are 80 plaintiffs sharing the other 66.6 percent.
Let us permit Bangkok to comment in his own inimitable way, then I will reply and, hopefully, give some clarification to the economics – what it really means – to the plaintiffs in dollars and cents – and also to the lawyers and, of course, the defendants:
Great article, Frank.
But despite your prediction, a ‘settlement’ is guaranteed here.
With the lower standard of “preponderance of evidence” in civil cases, Clare will understand that she can’t sway a jury to support her and she’ll lose too much of her fortune if she leaves it to a jury (i.e., swaying 1 or 2 holdout jurors won’t work in a civil case).
It’s not about her stupidity. It’s about her self survival instinct.
That’s in addition to the ‘incriminating evidence’ that such a trial might provide (to the DOJ) for another round of racketeering indictments, possibly against Sara too.
Clare, Sara and [Rosa Laura] Junco just can’t withstand the discovery process and a trial.
Sara moved to France to avoid this shit. Then she moved to Portugal. She’s uprooted her life to avoid this shit and there’s no way she’s gonna go to trial with this. She can’t win. Zero chance. So she’ll settle.
…and if Sara settles, she’ll likely convince Clare to settle. These sisters stick together. …and if Clare settles, Junco will settle too since she’s not gonna buck Legatus.
To put it another way…
How Sara goes, so goes the rest of them. 🙂
What about Keith’s wishes?
Since Keith is also a defendant (and they are still likely loyal to him), it’s possible that Keith will order them all not to settle.
He’ll do it just for spite, just to destroy these gals as much as possible — so they can’t move on with their wealthy lives while he flounders in prison. If Keith can’t have these girls or their money anymore (cuz he’s in prison), then he won’t want anybody else to have them or their money. He’ll want their reputations and their fortunes destroyed as much as possible IMO.
[Editor’s Note: At this point, I think it is appropriate to publish some pictures of the root cause of the lawsuit – Keith Alan Raniere. But, in accordance with fair publishing standards––]
Upsetting Picture Ahead Proceed with —
Now back to Bangkok…
However, as Keith gets sentenced to prison (for life) and the Bronfmans begin realizing that remaining with Keith means losing more of their fortunes and possibly more of their freedoms, I think they’ll have no choice but to begin doing anything they can to spare their money and freedom as much as possible.
Just as India Oxenberg eventually broke free from the spell when she realized it was in her best interests, so too will the Bronfmans.
At some point, they will accept the reality that Keith is no longer their Vanguard even if they don’t wanna accept that reality, since at some point they’ll realize “it’s either him or me”.
The only question is, HOW MUCH can Neil get from these wealthy women?
You haven’t answered this question, Frank, you fucken PUSSY.
How much would Neil likely accept to avoid a lengthy trial and to avoid years of further litigation to break various ‘trusts’ — just to get the money quickly? That’s the real question.
I’m guessing that Neil will settle for much less than we might anticipate, as his firm will likely get 1/3 of the settlement.
It’s possible the Bronfmans might outsmart Neil here, by getting him to settle for pennies on the dollar compared to what an actual jury trial might give his clients. Do his clients wanna wait years to litigate (and collect from various ‘trusts’) or do they want pennies on the dollar now?
I’m guessing he’ll settle for relative chump change, especially when you divide up the loot among 80 clients.
I’d rather hear your insight into this topic, Frank, if you have the balls to make such a prediction and stop being such a PUSSY.
My Response to Bangkok
by Frank Parlato
These are such good questions Bangkok and that is why I chose to answer you in this post and, of course, demonstrate [though that is not the reason] whether I am a pussy or not.
The lawyers get a third of the settlement or award at trial.
Assuming, for sake of argument, that the 80 plaintiffs share in the verdict in roughly equal amounts [though that may not be the case at all] the basic math – which you, Bangkok, have already figured out is that:
Neil and the attorneys get 33.3 percent – and the 80 plaintiffs collectively get 66.6 percent – after any out-of-pocket lawsuit-related expenses are deducted from the settlement figure (e.g., fees paid to private investigators, expert witnesses, deposition transcrtibers; copying fees; filing fees; etc.).
So, the plaintiffs each get a little less than one percent [0.8 percent] of the “net” amount of the settlement figure.
Herein lies a curious kind of potential conflict. Not just with Neil but in all class actions or multiple plaintiff lawsuits.
The lawyers make more than the plaintiffs.
For example, a $10 million net settlement means Neil and his law firm get $3.3 million – a pretty good payday – and the plaintiffs get $82,500 each. A not so good payday for many of them.
A $20 million net settlement means Neil and his law firm gets $6.6 million – and plaintiffs get $165,000 each.
So, you see the proportions vastly favors the lawyers.
Would Neil settle for $10 or $20 million and rake in a $3 or $6 million payday?
That’s hard to say.
Would Clare, Sara and Rosa Laura even offer that much to settle – say each of them chipping in about $7 million each – to make this lawsuit go away?
In the old Raniere days, a settlement would have never happened. They would have spent more than $20 million just to fight a la Raniere.
Now, with the madman in prison, it would be wise probably to settle fast – if, of course, Neil can persuade his plaintiffs to take $20 million.
Maybe he can – especially since going to trial might mean years of waiting and involves the risk of losing. And the risk of winning but not getting paid.
A fast settlement means cash in hand, not years of waiting in the bush.
Also, since most of the plaintiffs are rather timid and do not want their names known publicly, the quicker it is settled, the quicker they can anonymously get their money and put this behind them.
Besides that, if it went to trial, let’s be candid – it will take several years. Let’s project a trial date for late 2023 or early 2024.
If Neil wins at trial, there is actually a pretty good chance it will be appealed and no money will be paid after the victory in court.
If he wins on appeal, say in 2026, Neil will get judgments against the main three defendants [only three have any money anyway – the Bronfmans and Rosa Laura Junco – these are the true targets of the lawsuit.]
However, the Bronfmans and Rosa Laura might manage to get their assets out of the USA [if they have not already] and there will be no US federal jurisdiction to collect on the judgments.
In fact, one of the big issues is whether or not Neil can pierce Clare’s and Sara’s trusts to collect on the lawsuit or whether their trusts are immune from civil judgments against them personally.
No, the trial route is a long, long road and fraught with impediments.
Settling is the way, of course, as Bangkok points out.
But will the three wealthy nuts settle?
I think the strongest hand Neil has is that the process of discovery and depositions make the three women with money quite vulnerable to revelations of more crimes. The EDNY will be watching.
There is a chance that by prolonging the civil case through to trial will expose Sara, Clare and Rosa Laura [Rosa Laura is the one who offered her virgin daughter to Raniere] to more criminal exposure and more horrendous embarrassment [especially for Rosa Laura].
If either Rosa Laura or Sara has a chance of quietly living their lives, a settlement might seem attractive.
So, what will it mean to the plaintiffs?
Let’s say in court Neil wins a $100 million judgment – $33 million for his firm and $825,000 for each plaintiff – in 2026.
It would be great, but I think the odds of collecting all if it is almost nil.
If, on the other hand, Neil could get say $30 million within a year by settlement – a long shot but not impossible [$10 million each for the three moneyed defendants] – that’s $10 million for the lawyers and $250,000 per plaintiff.
Not a bad payday.
That figure $30 million, I believe, is the extreme upper end of what might be expected in settlement.
The lower end of a settlement might be $6 million, with $2 million to lawyers and $50,000 per plaintiff.
Of course, there is always the chance at zero. No settlement, no successful result at trial, no collection of the money awarded at trial.
In any event, were I one of the plaintiffs, I would not count on retiring from this lawsuit but rather hope to get some recompense for the troubles of life caused by Nxivm.
I believe the plaintiffs have a very good and serious lead lawyer and a solid team backing him up. There is a reason the lawyers make more.
Neil has about three or four years of his life into this, full time. His law firm took all the risk and made the investment of money and time. With so much into it already, the likelihood of a good outcome is pretty good.
Just keep in mind the realities. This is not a get rich quick scheme for the plaintiffs.
Although it is not inconceivable the lawyers may get rich.
That is how the system is set up and when you consider that the alternative for the plaintiffs is no lawsuit and nothing at all – I would hazard a guess that a settlement where they get something – even if it is far less than what they think they deserve – is better than the alternative.
Of course, I could be wrong. Maybe Neil will win a $200 million dollar judgment and everyone walks away with more than $1.5 million.
Time will tell.