By Patrick Backup
I will probably get a shitstorm again for defending Keith Raniere, but still: I’ve been following this the last few months without commenting, and I still sincerely believe two things, namely:
1.) Keith’s lawyers are absolutely right that a life sentence (or even 15 or 20 years) is completely out of proportion given the nature of his crimes.
As I said in a former post, I don’t believe Raniere should walk out free. He did things that I do not want to justify. But still, the women FREELY gave the collateral, no one forced them to.
A lot of them were intelligent and successful females that were well able to make their own decisions about this. (I`m excluding the young women he brought in from Mexico – which is why I say he should receive a punishment).
In closing: I believe a sentence of about five years would be appropriate for exploiting some of the younger females. But honestly, I don’t even think that the evidence itself is really enough to say Keith engaged in “sex trafficking”.
He probably exploited some of those Mexican women and maybe even threatened them, but I personally do not think that reaches the extent of “trafficking” in a legal sense.
2.) I’ve said this before: I have never seen a judge as biased towards someone as Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis is against Keith.
For whatever reason, he obviously hates him and wants him behind bars for life.
The fact that he wants to allow victims that weren’t even in the original trial to testify (and maybe even remain anonymous) is a perversion of justice. In my jurisdiction that in itself would be illegal!
Honestly, I think Keith’s lawyers should concentrate on getting a new judge. Garaufis should not be allowed to be the one who sentences Keith.
I believe there are sufficient legal arguments to prove he is biased.