Frank Report has confirmed that Keith Raniere spent last night at the U.S. Penitentiary (USP) in Lewisburg, PA. Here is how he is listed today in the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) Inmate Locator system:
|Register Number: 57005-177|
|Located at: Lewisburg USP|
|Release Date: 06/27/2120|
Such a listing could mean one of two things: (1) Keith (and the other federal prisoners on the same bus transporting him) stopped at the Lewisburg prison for the night – and will be back on the road today; or (2) Keith has been assigned to Lewisburg at least until his restitution hearing is over and his appeal has been filed.
If Lewisburg is only a transient stop, then Keith could still have been assigned to the USP in Tucson, AZ – or to some other federal facility. Regardless of where he’s been assigned, he may go through the Federal Transfer Center (FTC) in Oklahoma City, OK – which is where the BOP often houses prisoners who are en route to another location.
If he does end up in the Oklahoma City facility, Keith might get lucky and catch a Con-Air flight to his assigned location. Otherwise, he’ll spend several more days on a federal bus.
Frank Report is currently trying to track down a new rumor about Keith’s status. Once we know more about that, we’ll share the info with our readers.
Where Is Keith Raniere?
Keith Raniere was moved out of the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center [MDC] at about 4 AM on Wednesday, January 6th, according to a source within the prison.
Earlier, Raniere learned that the federal Bureau of Prisons [BOP] was planning to move him to another prison (He reportedly has been assigned to the USP in Tucson Arizona). He has been at the MDC since April 2018.
Sometime during the day, yesterday, prison officials came to his cell and removed his belongings. Based on the BOP’s typical Coronavirus protocol, Raniere was expected to be quarantined for 7-12 days and/or tested for COVID prior to being transferred.
Learning that the BOP planned to move him as early as in one week, his lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean filed a letter last night asking Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis to recommend that Raniere be held in Brooklyn for several months in order for her to be able to consult with him in person while preparing the appeal and preparing for restitution hearings likely to be scheduled in February.
Bonjean told Frank Report in a statement, “I am most concerned that as a result of the Government’s eagerness to transfer Mr. Raniere, I will not be afforded the opportunity to meet with my client. He is a critical asset to his own defense and he will be greatly prejudiced if I am unable to meet with him over the course of the next several months as we prepare the briefs in his case.”
Within hours of Bonjean filing her request from the judge to keep Raniere in Brooklyn, and without being quarantined and without a COVID test, Raniere was removed from MDC, making Bonjean’s letter moot.
“If you write a letter to a judge asking him to intervene, the BOP speeds things up,” said a lawyer familiar with BOP procedures. “They may have removed Raniere in the dead of night just to ensure the judge would not order keeping Raniere in Brooklyn in the morning.”
It is not known where Raniere is presently, though one source familiar with federal prisoner transfer protocol out of MDC said he likely was put on a bus headed to Oklahoma City, where he will remain for several days for processing before being moved to Tucson.
The bus ride would probably take at least two days.
The source also said he might possibly have been flown.
Raniere would travel in handcuffs and shackles and a belly chain and possibly “the black box,” a plastic casing over the chain linking the handcuffs, to further hamper movement.
He might be attired in a paper uniform to make escape problematic since the uniform will fall apart if the prisoner makes sudden movements or it gets wet.
According to PrisonerResources.com “The typical federal prison bus is a tandem-axel, diesel-engine, Greyhound- or Trailsways-type motor coach which has been converted … The conversions include a steel, gated screen at the front of the bus to separate the bus driver and an armed prison guard from the prisoners. The lockable gate allows access to the passenger area where two rows of non-adjustable double seats provide nominally comfortable, fixed seating for approximately 40 federal prisoners and detainees. Windows are generally barred or screened on the interior side, but allow mostly for unimpeded views through standard dark-tinted glass. At the rear of the bus is a semi-private toilet which is opposite a cage for a second armed prison guard. Guards on the bus are armed with both lethal and nonlethal weaponry…
“Bus rides may last anywhere from two to 12 hours or more, depending on the destination and the number of stops made along the way to pick-up or drop-off prisoners. Longer trips may last more than one day, in which case federal prisoners being transported are held overnight (or longer) in detention centers or other holdover facilities (often in the segregated housing units of federal prisons).
“If prisoners are going to be on the bus for several hours, it is not uncommon for the prison guards on board to ask a lower-custody level inmate to act as a bus orderly. If the prisoner agrees, their restraints are sometimes fully or partially removed so that they can move around the bus more easily. They may be required to retrieve water for fellow inmates from a cooler at the back of the bus if there is no bottled water on board, or to pass out packaged meals at mealtimes, after which they collect the trash.
“If no prisoner is asked to be a bus orderly, or if none accept the position, the prison guard at the front of the bus will pass the packaged meals through a slot in the gated screen at mealtimes and the prisoners in turn pass them back from seat to seat until everyone has a meal. If bottled water is not available, prisoners must get up and make their way to the water cooler at the back of the bus when they need a drink. Before leaving their seat for any reason, it is advised that prisoners inform the prison guards of their intent to avoid alarm.
“Most trips aboard a federal prison bus are uneventful, but if trouble should arise, inmates should remain seated or move calmly away, if necessary and possible. During such an event, everyone on board is at risk of being sprayed with CS gas, other chemical agents, or even of being fired upon with live or nonlethal ammunition if the situation gets out of hand.
“Upon arrival at their final destination, prisoners are escorted off the bus to the facility’s R&D area to await processing into their designated federal prison.”
Such is the fate of the Vanguard. He went from a venerated leader of a tightknit community, where his every whim was law, to be corralled in the dead of night in chains, put on a prison bus, fed the equivalent of gruel on the way, and headed to a destination unknown, whisked away from the proper legal consultation he should be afforded with his attorney.
One has to wonder if the recent spate of criticism by Raniere and his followers of the judge, the prosecutors and the BOP – and the knowledge that there was going to be a high profile appeal – caused his sudden removal from MDC, almost ensuring meetings with his attorney will be next to impossible.