Ivy Nevares Complete Statement at Clare Bronfman’s Sentencing Hearing

Ivy Nevares

Ivy Nevares was a longtime member of Nxivm and one of Keith Alan Raniere’s victims.  She was his girlfriend and was promised by him to be the mother of his children. He lied to her of course.

I have written often about how this intelligent and attractive woman was abused by Raniere and it is nice to know she left the monster.  She left him in April 2018, just after he was arrested in Mexico. Ivy was also a victim of Raniere’s top henchwoman, Clare Webb Bronfman, as we shall see from her statement.

Ivy spoke today at the sentencing hearing of Clare Bronfman – via video.

Here is her statement on the record.

Ivy was a girlfriend of Keith Raniere’s.


Your Honor,

My name is Ivy Nevares. Thank you for providing a space for me to share the statement I’ve prepared for Clare Bronfman’s sentencing hearing.

Clare came to ESP at the height of her privilege, but sorely lacking as a woman in her early twenties—uneducated, socially inept, insecure and practically friendless. When I met her, she was timid but she was kind. No one would ever guess she was an heiress to the Seagram fortune—not by the way she looked or interacted with others.

Like many of us, Keith Raniere exploited her vulnerabilities. Yet, because of her wealth, he took her for a much longer ride, giving her an unearned position, illegitimate status and inclusion in a select group she so desperately craved, but hardly deserved. She never earned the power she was given—not by title, skill or performance.

And in return, she used her power to abuse others, especially those of us in Raniere’s “inner circle.”


The “Inner Circle” of NXIVM/ESP

I would like to address Clare directly for a few moments.

Clare, after all the evidence, after countess victims whom you considered among friends—how can you remain loyal to your Vanguard? No matter how hard you try, you cannot be principled if the person you follow is a sociopath and a convicted criminal.

Your Honor, when Raniere raised Clare to power in 2009, she began using her position to exploit me through indentured servitude. As soon as Clare supplanted Nancy Salzman as NXIVM’s de facto decision-maker on the executive board, Clare lowered my pay, removed what insignificant privileges the company afforded me and raised my rent—all punishments for my supposed “ethical breach” against Raniere.

In truth, she punished me for disobeying him. Salzman would later tell me Clare did these things of her own volition.

Twice she caused me to go into financial debt. Together with Raniere, Salzman and Kathy Russell, she subjected me to forced labor as soon as she was given the chance. She also participated in the myriad of lies told to me to keep me from defecting.

My starting salary with ESP was $36,000 a year—this was back in 2002. By the time I stopped working for the company in early 2017, I never earned more than $48,000 a year. I was NXIVM’s hardest-working employee, always filling two or more roles at once and sometimes working up to 20 hours a day.

Yet I was provided no benefits, no health insurance, no 401K, no worker’s comp—nothing. The only so-called benefit was a $5 credit per hour worked that could only apply towards ESP’s curriculum.

Ivy Nevares started with Nxivm in 2002

Instead of recognizing Raniere’s and others’ abuses against me and righting them, Clare enacted her own with exceptional cruelty: She had me teach two intensive trainings at her Fiji resort where students paid $20,000 each, yet she didn’t pay me a cent for the work I performed. I had to pay over $5,000 out of pocket to even be able to teach the second training because she refused to pay for my travel and immigration expenses. This happened after she threatened to have another person teach the curriculum that had taken me years to write and develop. It’s important to note she leveraged the entire situation before I was fully recovered from an emergency shoulder surgery that I, of course, paid for out of pocket.

This is how she treated NXIVM’s most loyal workers: demanding, underpaying or not paying at all. But when it came time to put down hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars for lawsuits and PR firms, Clare would do so without a second thought.

One of the cruelest and most reckless things she ever did was hiring me to care for a woman who I later learned had suffered a psychotic break during a Jness training that Clare was attending at the time. She also tasked the now-former doctor Brandon Porter to care for her. She, Raniere and Salzman were frightened that if the woman was taken to a hospital, it would implicate the company in wrongdoing—and that was not the first case.

I took 12-hour night shifts for a week to care for this woman. I still remember running across a field after she suddenly took off in the middle of the night. I thrashed through two feet of snow, screaming into the phone as I asked Salzman what to do, horrified at the possibility she might kill herself and others by running into traffic.

The FORMER DOCTOR, Brandon Porter

Clare risked Porter losing his medical license by not taking her to a hospital. She risked this woman’s life by not allowing her to be cared for by trained professionals. She risked my life by putting me in an impossible situation, knowing I needed the money.

While payment for these services is the most trivial point by comparison, it demonstrates her callousness and punitive nature: she paid me the going rate for babysitting a child: $12 an hour.

I protested then, citing my measly $17-an-hour wage as a minimum standard, but she refused to pay the difference because of my so-called “ethical breach.”

Your Honor, Clare could have led the company towards just rule, she had the power and she had the chance—she could have done so much good.

Instead, she and her sister, Sara, became Raniere’s primary enablers. I am not alone in my belief that without their money, he could have never harmed as many people as he did.

These two had a great time, rising in the cult disproportionate to their skills or efforts, but not disproportionate to their wealth.

Clare claims she did not bankroll Raniere or his organizations, that she did not know what he was doing behind the scenes, and that she bears no responsibility in what he did. Again, I would like to address her.

Clare, you gave millions of dollars to him. Even if you never asked what he did with it, you’re still responsible for exponentially amplifying his abuses. You were and are the propellant to his unyielding fire.

Not knowing doesn’t relieve us of responsibility, remember that? So why do you refuse to see your part in all these damages?

In addition to exploiting many of us and facilitating Raniere’s trafficking of women, she has crippled countless others through vindictive litigiousness. She even sacrificed her relationship with her beloved father.

Clare’s father was Edgar Bronfman Sr, the billionaire CEO of Seagram’s Liquor and president of the World’s Jewish Congress. Clare planted malware on her father’s computer in order to allow Keith Raniere to spy on him.

I ask Clare: Would he be proud of you knowing that you’re going to prison for following the very monster he was trying to protect you from?

I would like the Court to know I see no indication that Clare has any remorse about what she’s done—not her guilty plea, not her funding Raniere’s defense and cohorts, not her letter to the Court nor her recent filings claiming she has been unjustly targeted because of her wealth.

If I may, again, address her.

Clare, you are being held accountable for your crimes. Sylvie wasn’t your only victim. I am one of them, as are a number of women whom I spoke with and heard their direct account of how you exploited them until the government forced you to stop.

The fact that you want to persuade the Court and the public to think otherwise demonstrates you have no remorse whatsoever over what you’ve done, over what you are still doing, and over what you will continue to do if you keep supporting and funding Raniere.

In our last face-to-face before I left Albany in 2018, I asked Clare point-blank: “Clare, you’ve spent your entire time and resources defending Raniere. Are you willing to spend the rest of your life defending him?”

Not a moment had passed before she turned and said, “Absolutely.”

When I read her last court filing, where her lawyers adamantly urge the Court to prohibit other victims from speaking at this hearing, I took it as the statement of a woman who refuses, at all costs, to see and hear the extent of the damage she has done.

Your Honor, all of Raniere’s organizations prey upon well-intentioned people, baiting them with promises of success and nobility. He hasn’t stopped. He will not stop. 

Clare’s money will simply amplify the harm Raniere and she can do together. For this reason, I not only consider her a menace to me and her other perceived enemies, but to society at large.

I would like to address Clare one final time.

Raniere often said the most sacred and valuable thing we have in the world is time because it is the one thing that can never be replaced.

Clare, I hope during the years you sit in prison, you reflect on this: your minutes, hours and days are only a fraction of what you, Raniere and his women stole from me.

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  • While I do not doubt Ivy had issues within the cult, her statement reads like sour grapes. She spends a very large amount of time going on about how Clare didn’t deserve this or that and how she treated her terribly as a “most devoted member”. There just seems to be something that doesn’t ring entirely true about this specific statement.

  • Endless thanks to Ivy for revisiting this trauma for justice. Many thanks to Frank for his continued efforts to bring truth to-what was to many-power. I have no doubt that many have been blinded by their privilege, but when they choose to make a positive impact I applaud them. But to those who choose to continue to discredit this blog and forum with any misogynistic/xenophobic thought that crosses their minds, I have little patience. I’d love for this to be a safe forum for other victims of similar perpetrators to seek escape, not just an opportunity to spew our editorial opinions on the world.

  • I gave up my youth to narcissistic, sociopathic bastards that make a living off of good-hearted, honest, naive people. May the plight of the NXIVM survivors like beautiful and talented writer Ivy serve as a warning sign to others equally kind-hearted. I suspect and hope Ivy has a new book waiting to be written.

    • Were you in NXIVM? Did you know about bad things but chose to ignore it? And perhaps Ivy will write a book. It seems to be the fashionable thing nxivm perps do when they spent years in the cult without any scrutiny on their own roles: i.e., Mark Vicente and Sarah Edmondson. Books, documentaries, perhaps statues erected in every state.

  • I left my 16-day Intensive in Albany an emotional mess! I cried all the way home for three hours to New York City

    Nxivm tried to undo the harm with Lauren Salzman doing absolutely nothing of value to help me.

    I want to see Nancy and Lauren two mean mercenary money-hungry bitches the long prison sentences they earned!

    • I’m sorry that happened to you. I think the readers in here would be very interested in the details of this event if you wanted to share.

  • So… can any NXIVM member now present themselves as victims and not perpetrators? Can you now spend a decade or two in this cult without any scrutiny on your role? Can you know about bad things, even participate, without scrutiny? All this stuff has been out for years and these people are getting their asses kissed. “Your so brave,” “Thank you for speaking the truth!” These people had years to leave and speak out. Raniere was a manipulative cunt, but these people still made their own decisions.

    • Ivy was very well manipulated by Keith and the women. She was, according to many sources, always lied to and managed so she did not know the truth.

      • That doesn’t really answer the question. And your sources, are they immune from criticism too? How do they know Ivy was lied to? Does that mean they knew the truth but ignored or engaged in it too? Ivy was named as a likely future defendant in Joe O’Hara’s lawsuit circa February 2012. There was tons of information out there. Are you saying Ivy had zero idea of any criminal activity at all? None? Yes, Keith Raniere and his dumb bitches were and are horrible manipulative asswipes, but there is no way Ivy and probably your sources (who probably include Mark Vicente and Sarah Edmondson) didn’t know anything. You could make “victims” out of anyone it seems. “Oh, they were manipulated”. “They were under a spell”. What if Clare Bronfman turned against Queef and claimed she was manipulated? What if she helped in his takedown to save herself? She would still be scum.

        I put you, Frank Parlato, in the category of people genuinely responsible for bringing these assholes down. And there were others before you. Has the mainstream media ever heard of John Tighe? The NXIVM 9? Rick Ross? Joe O’Hara? I know you probably think she’s a hoe, but maybe Toni Natalie? Then others came along who were perpetrators and stole the glory, so to speak. Like a game of Soccer. Someone on your team got the ball to the other side of the field, while avoiding other players trying to foul and break the rules, then kicked the ball towards the open net to score the winning goal…. then Sarah Edmondson and Mark Vicente come along and kick the ball into the net stealing the goal. The narrative of the end of NXIVM feels like an anti-climax and very backward. The wrong people are getting their asses polished and perpetrators are not getting called out. Check out twitter. These perpetrators are all patting each other on the back, including those who really have no right to. They have convinced themselves they are innocent, morally righteous victims and only the defendants in this trial are bad. And Christ, help us… why are they all lefties?

        When is your trial taking place? Good luck with it.

        • Simply put: Everyone is accountable for the crimes they committed whether they later became heroes, or not.

          Vicente and Edmondson may have “kicked the ball into the goal” and stolen all the glory but they are also accountable for perpetrating the lie and criminal enterprise

          • I cannot speak about what happened before June 2017 – but I believe the actions of Vicente and Edmondson were pivotal in taking down Nxivm. Knowing both of them, I truly do not believe their actions when they were with Nxivm were nefarious. Certainly, they were motivated by making money, but I, for one, cannot believe they were actively perpetrating lies and deception. Just the contrary – I think they believed they were helping people.

        • Mark Vicente has almost no followers on Twitter. He is still a nobody. Frank has an enterprise here and is thriving!

        • Well said…many ex-members are upset by this perpetuation of deceit that still shrouds the story. Mark and Sarah have become the new “inner circle” …lack of accountability and false hero-worship all over again….disgusting

      • Come on Frank… You know [redacted] was involved with the money laundering. You reposted John Tighe’s excellent article about it, redacting her name. Both [redacted] were named as likely future defendants in Joe O’Hara’s lawsuit. You don’t know either bullshitter well enough to say their poop don’t smell.

        • I disagree. I don’t think for one second that the mother had one bit of complicity in any money laundering scheme. I have interviewed her at length. I see not reason to drag her name into this with unsubstantiated allegations. Contrarily, she helped me with critical information at a time it was most needed. She did nothing illegal and I am convinced she knew nothing about what the leaders were doing.

          • Why would John Tighe make such a specific claim about it then? He named her as a culprit, he even posted her nxivm membership number. Why would he lie about such a thing?

            The claim by John Tighe was money from Mexico was being sent to PO addresses in the US and the mother was emptying the boxes.

            Come on, Frank. I know you see her son in a favourable light due to his role post-2017, but the above cannot simply be dismissed.

            John Tighe also in the same article stated that Siobhan Hotaling was traveling to Vancouver on a tourist visa and teaching nxivm courses (visa fraud) and then brought money back over the border (illegal). That these two methods of money laundering were inefficient so the Necker Island people plotted new strategies including moving huge sums of cash to the Caribbean.

            Both women were named in Joe O’Hara’s lawsuit.

            Where would John Tighe get this information from? Why would he make such extremely specific allegations against these two without good reason? Have you spoken to him? Has he said he lied?

            Also, have you asked the above woman directly about what John Tighe revealed about her? Is it impossible that maybe she could tell porkies too?

  • I am happy for you to have reclaimed your life…always wondered when you would leave…knowing they abused you for years. So many good people…and the tragedy of the core being so corrupt. I hope they all are held accountable and at least some of the victims will be compensated. Too bad Clare won’t be made to use her wealth to make up for all the harm she caused…it might begin to heal her breach against humanity.
    Be well, Ivy

    • Frank,

      What does “helping people” mean in Nexiumese? You know, you’ve been so detailed, and so diverse in your inquiry, but I couldn’t find your article about all humanitarian endeavors of NXIVM.

      Will the last episode of The Vow be devoted to a montage of 2O years of ethical Humanitarianism, with detailed interviews?

      That’s the twist I’m hoping for, to be wrong even though I know the answer to both.

  • Awesome, Ivy! Can’t wait to hear more of your fascinating story and I’m elated you are healing so well through your writing.

  • Ivy Nevares’ letter is one of the best pieces of writing I have had the pleasure to read in a very long time.

    I am so sorry for Miss Nevares’ suffering. I wish her well.

  • Late December 2017, Frank did a piece about Ivy leaving.

    Perhaps that was bait put out by Raniere to see which people would reach out to her?

  • She posted this on her Insta today, and yesterday there was a post about her relationship with Keith. I wondered if she would say anything. But here she was, along with Kristin Keefe.

    I hope Ivy is safe, now.

    Her statement about Clare really lays bare the coldness and cruelty of Clare and how she treats others. Here’s to Ivy and her courage, along with all the victims and their impact statements. It took so much courage to face Clare and call bullshit on her. Good for Ivy.

  • Now that is beautifully put, every word. Maybe the best contribution yet, of telling it like it is, to me anyhow.

    Recalling many details of Ivy’s experiences, from the group’s use of such selfish (and jealous) cruelty and humiliation as tactics to belittle her, this must have been so strengthening, for her to be able to speak at Clare Bronfman’s sentencing. Respect.

  • Wow. Just wow. I am moved by the keen description of these cruelties. Thank you, Ivy. No one could make this stuff up. You are very brave.

    “One of the cruelest and most reckless things she ever did was hiring me to care for a woman who I later learned had suffered a psychotic break during a Jness training…She, Raniere and Salzman were frightened that if the woman was taken to a hospital, it would implicate the company in wrongdoing—and that was not the first case.”

    Shades of Kristin Snyder…

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