By Suneel Chakravorty
In my recent article, I analyzed Keith Raniere’s “Call to Action” and examined some of what I consider major breaches of due process and justice in his case. That was just the beginning. I have a lot more to say.
I have a plan to redress this injustice.
Before Frank Report readers get too upset, let me say that I do not have all the answers. That’s why I am asking questions and investigating. Some of you might say Keith is convicted, so the matter is settled. But if it was unjust, untrue, if it was a railroading of an innocent man, then it is not settled. It will never be settled if justice was not done.
There is no infallibility I know of ascribed to the US criminal justice system. Innocent people get convicted all the time, as many studies show.
My plan is to question anything and everything, even the fairness of the most hated, despised and reviled Keith Raniere’s trial. And I plan to publish the results. Personally, as of now, I think he did not receive a fair trial. Still, I am examining all the issues and my plan is to wage a campaign to get this information – whatever it is – out to the world at large.
My plan is to not only judge the trial from a standpoint of fairness but also judge of whether he is innocent. Someone could be guilty and at the same time have been robbed of due process. But is he innocent as well?
I am willing to listen to anyone with evidence to prove or disprove Keith’s innocence.
Below are some of the issues which I am concerned about – and of which I or my colleagues are currently examining and plan to write about. I think the results of this examination may lead to the public gradually adopting my view that Keith got anything but a fair trial.
If I am right, I expect an appeal to be granted, a new trial and an acquittal – when the trial is fair. I can well envision Keith walking out a free man and in the process showing the world that the system can be brutally unfair.
But if, on the other hand, I am wrong, and the results of the investigation I am conducting shows that there was due process and a fair trial, and that Keith is guilty then I will tell that to the world or anyone who will listen and then for me the matter will be settled.
For those readers who are certain that Keith did get a fair trial, then you should have nothing to be worried about in my little investigation of the issues. That truth will be evident soon enough.
Here is the list of topics.
1. How does Keith’s 120 year sentence compare to other cases?
Keith’s charges had no violence, weapons or drugs. We will look for cases with similar charges to Keith’s and compare the sentences and look for similar sentences and compare the cases across several dimensions..
2. Was the evidence presented by the prosecution fact-driven or sensational or emotional?
Much of the evidence in the charges rests on witness testimony. It is essential that we examine what the so-called “victims” such as Nicole and Jaye testified to, how their testimony relates to the charges, if it all, and whether it was factual or emotionally charged.
3. Was the evidence against Keith strong or flimsy?
A man was sentenced to 120 years. Let’s see how ironclad the evidence was.
4. Was Keith condemned for alleged moral deviance or actual crimes?
A thorough examination of the government’s closing statements in the trial and statements at sentencing may tell us what Keith’s most egregious transgressions were, in their eyes.
5. How can there be sex trafficking if there was no money exchanged?
Sex trafficking was a single act of oral sex between two women wherein no money changed hands. Is that what Congress intended in their federal sex trafficking statute?
6. Was the element of “coercion” met in the sex trafficking charge?
Coercion has a legal definition. We will test if it fits Nicole’s so-called sex trafficking and deal with another “C” word: consent.
7. Was the element of “intent’ met in the sex trafficking charge?
We will examine if Keith knew Nicole was being coerced, assuming she was being coerced. Without intent, there can be no sex trafficking.
8. What is Blackstone’s Ratio and should we uphold it?
Blackstone’s ratio is that it is “better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” Let’s examine this idea and its merits and downsides.
9. How does the 97% US federal conviction rate compare with fascist regimes?
Maybe prosecutors only pick worthy cases. We will compare the US to other developed countries and to authoritarian regimes to delve deeper into this.
10. Should someone who is hated be treated the same under the law as someone who is loved, and did that happen in this case?
Let’s examine if the prosecution passed the litmus test of Lady Justice being blind. If hated Keith received the same treatment as a beloved defendant, then they passed.
11. Could any of the charges against Keith be considered “victimless crimes”?
Let’s examine the charges and see if there are any where we cannot identify an actual victim and see what sentence Keith received for those.
12. How is jury nullification relevant to Keith’s case?
Let’s define what jury nullification is. We’ll look at the jury questionnaire and aspects of the jury selection process to see if there were any notable irregularities.
13. How was the attempted sex trafficking of Jaye proven without India Oxenberg or Allison Mack testifying?
Let’s unpack the testimony of Jaye and the prosecution’s argument and see how Keith was even involved in the charge.
14. Should a mysteriously accessed device in the child porn charge be admitted as evidence?
According to experts, alleged child porn pictures “found’ on electronic devices may have been tampered with. The FBI admitted during trial that someone accessed the device while in FBI custody but did not know who it was. Should this evidence have been admitted?
15. What is Camila’s new role in the case?
Let’s examine what Camila’s role in the case and the charges and what may have inspired her to come forward at last.
16. What if the tampering is proven and Camila is also telling the truth?
We will examine what due process would demand in such a difficult situation.
17. What are the ramifications of the judge stopping Lauren Salzman’s cross examination?
Lauren was a major witness in the government’s case and she was excused by the judge when she started crying. It was also during Marc Agnifilo’s questioning of issues related to her plea deal.
18. Should Lauren have been recalled or was it better to go for a mistrial?
Keith’s attorney asked for a mistrial. Let’s examine the strategy behind that as compared to asking for Lauren to be recalled.
19. Did the judge “poison the well” by his remarks about Lauren and his scolding Agnifilo?
Let’s examine the judge’s comments when he stopped Lauren’s cross-examination and during the next morning as well as what effect this had on the jury’s perception of Marc Agnfilo. Also, let’s examine how this affected Agnifilo’s practical ability to cross-examine the subsequent female witnesses.
20. How did the judge treat prosecutor Moira Penza versus defense attorney Marc Agnifilo?
Let’s compare the judge’s remarks toward Penza and Agnifilo and see whether the judge treated them similarly.
21. What impact did the judge’s decision on witness anonymity have on the case?
The judge ruled that certain women testifying against Keith or being mentioned in court should be identified by only their first names, while supporters of Keith were identified by first and last names. Let’s look at what impression this gave to the jury and if the judge made any attempts to address this.
22. What impact did the judge’s rules regarding the partial sequestering of the jury and their anonymity have on the case?
Let’s examine what impression this may have given to the jury.
23. What probative value did the Camila texts have?
Let’s examine the Camila texts in detail, including the texts that were not used by the prosecution, and identify what charges they were relevant to or what the evidentiary purpose behind them was.
24. How were the Camila texts obtained and should they have been admissible?
Let’s look at the chain of custody for the texts and the defense’s argument for their inadmissibility
25. What does Daniela and Nicole’s participation in a civil lawsuit have to do with the case?
The defense argues that Daniela and Nicole lied about their planned participation in a civil lawsuit. Let’s examine the defense’s argument and consider what the prosecution might have known about the civil case and Neil Glazer’s involvement.
26. Can adult women consent at the time and later withdraw their consent to create a crime?
We will evaluate this in the context of DOS and explore the ramifications
27. Can a female victim be questioned?
We will debate whether or not questioning of female victims should be allowed, what the implications are for due process, and what, if anything, should gender have to do with this question.
28. What were Lauren’s motivations and relationship with the prosecution?
Let’s look at Lauren’s role in the case and what her motivations may have been in testifying.
29. Were some witnesses given deals of immunity?
It seems Daniela and Sylvie were both unindicted co-conspirators in racketeering, immigration fraud and other crimes. Maybe this influenced their decision to testify and how they testified. Maybe it didn’t.
30. Was Keith kidnapped or arrested?
Keith was seized by unknown gunmen – possibly police, possibly bounty hunters- in Mexico and removed to the USA on the same day, circumventing legal extradition procedures. Does this nullify jurisdiction in the case? What actually happened? Who seized Keith?
31. Did prosecutors mislead the court to deny Keith bail?
Prosecutors alleged Keith fled to Mexico to hide from US authorities. He was denied bail and held in custody. Did they mislead the court?
32. Did the judge not properly review the evidence that Keith wasn’t hiding?
Marc Agnifilo, [Docket #43] in his motion for bond rebutted the prosecution’s theory of Keith being a flight risk and offered concrete evidence to that effect. Should this not have been enough to allow Keith on bail?
33. What impact did Keith not having bail have on his ability to mount a proper defense?
Let’s look at how getting out on bail or remaining in detention affect a defendant’s chances in general and examine the specifics of Keith’s circumstances and the size of his case.
34. Did any “victims” in the case have a motive to lie?
Let’s go through each of the “victims”, investigate their motives, and determine whether they were all above board or if any had dubious motives.
35. What were Keith’s relationships with the alleged victims?
36. What were Keith’s relationships with the alleged co-conspirators?
37. Was Daniela really a captive in the room? What role did her father and mother play?
Let’s go through her testimony in detail as well as her victim impact statement at sentencing as well as those of her mother and her brother to paint a picture of what happened.
38. What were the elements of Daniela’s so-called imprisonment in the room?
Let’s go through the legal definition of the document servitude charge and see if Keith’s conduct or Lauren’s conduct meet the legal definition.
39. Were any potential defense witnesses intimidated by the government?
Agnifilo filed a Rule 33 motion for a new trial prior to sentencing and included affidavits alleging the prosecution threatened witnesses into silence. Let’s examine the affidavits, who, if anyone, was threatened, and why they were threatened.
40. Were any statements made by the government to the court or to the press incorrect?
Let’s look at the government’s press releases, motions, and statements in trial and identify if there were any inaccuracies or false statements and what the possible impact of those were.
41. Did any witnesses have legitimate reason to fear for their lives?
The prosecution alleged that witnesses feared for their lives. Let’s look at what investigation they did into this, what evidence they found, and what the impact of these claims were on the case.
42. Did any witness for the prosecution change their story overtime?
Many of the major witnesses seemed to have a change in perspective. Where once they were positive towards NXIVM and Keith, now they feel the opposite. Let’s investigate why their story changed. Did they simply discover the truth?
43. What does the case look like when without sensational language and moral judgments?
Let’s restate Keith’s case in a purely fact-based way and see what that looks like.
44. What does the case look like when all the genders are reversed?
Let’s tell the story of the major charges, but with the genders swapped, and see whether we feel the same about both versions and what the significance of this analysis is.