Why I Choose to Publish Raniere’s Prison Letters About the ‘Innocence’ of His Codefendants

Frank Parlato [l] Keith Raniere [r]

A commenter named Clifton Park, who I sort of picture to look like this…

commented on the article: From Prison, Keith Raniere: ‘My Codefendants Are Innocent’ Part 1: Attackers Destroyed Our Community!:

“Per the article/ramblings, [Raniere wrote] ‘Although I have been incarcerated for 18 months (as of this writing)…’ So that means KR wrote this sometime between his conviction (June 2019) and his sentencing (October 2020).

“Frank, when and how did you receive this writing?

“Why publish it now, nearly a year and a half after it was penned?

“Just curious…..”

Screenshot of Frank Parlato interviewing Keith Raniere on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt in October 2020.

I replied to Clifton:

By Frank Parlato

I received Keith Raniere’s prison letter very recently. It is timely because he speaks about four of his codefendants who will soon be sentenced.

As far as when he wrote it, I do not know. I saw that he wrote in it that he had been incarcerated for 18 months. If that is accurate, he must have written at least the first part of it in October 2019, almost a year before being sentenced.

I understand he updated the series/article recently and only recently released it for publication.

As I explained in my introduction to the first part, it is important to publish his words from prison.

When it has direct bearing on his codefendants, it is doubly important.

Allison Mack in late 2020.


Nancy Salzman in 2019


Kathy Russell heads to court in 2019.


Lauren Salzman leaves court in 2019

You may note that I published every single victim statement delivered at his sentencing, with every gruesome detail about him. I have written some 5,000 stories criticizing and accusing him of various crimes and morally repugnant behavior.

I am not a follower.

I think Raniere is a despicable person and yet I believe he needs to be further studied to prevent this kind of thing from happening again: a community of mostly good people who followed a deplorable man.

Vanguard Week Celebrants. There are perhaps 500 people who paid thousands each to come to Lake George to celebrate Keith Raniere’s 10-day birthday celebration because they thought he was the most noble, the wisest, the kindest man they ever dreamed possible to have existed.

Raniere is also going to mount an appeal which I plan to cover carefully. It is possible that a person could be a horrible monster, and yet, at the same time, prosecutors might have committed misconduct. Raniere is claiming this. I do not know enough to agree or disagree. However, I think these allegations are more serious than the allegations against Raniere.

When government runs amok, even in the prosecution of bad guys, the implication is that they can use the same methods on good guys, on innocents.  Government is supposed to be the good guy. Due process, and the jury is supposed to decide if the defendant is the bad guy. If the government cheats, if they break the rules and do not provide due process, then they are both bad guys – the government and Raniere, then this needs to be exposed.

But let me be clear: I am not making the accusation of prosecutorial misconduct in Raniere’s case. He is making that accusation. I am covering it.

Nxivm Keith Raniere Holding Hands with Unknown Person
Keith Raniere

I repeat: It is possible for Raniere to be a villain and a ruthless criminal and for lawyers [prosecutors] working for the Department of Justice to be villains also and act in a way that would be criminal if a private citizen or defense lawyer did the same thing.

I believe that prosecutors for the Department of Justice often act in a criminal manner but are so unchecked and unmonitored that they can get away with almost anything, even convicting innocent people. I am not saying that this is the case in the Raniere prosecution.

But I have seen prosecutors at the DOJ act in a manner that I think is corrupt or which at least show a reckless disregard for the truth and an absolute carelessness about innocence or guilt.

Aside from this, if Raniere has something to say about his codefendants, I am interested in sharing it with readers. That’s why I am publishing this now. Readers often give valuable insights.

Even if everything he says is a lie, it should still be heard – and exposed.

Adolf Hitler

If I were regularly writing about Adolf Hitler, Charles Manson, Tim McVeigh, Attila the Hun or anyone who the public despises, past or present, if I got my hands on their unpublished, original words, I would publish it.

It might just be that it will prove greater villainy, or prove guilt, or it might help explain why the villain did what he did. And it might also slightly modify our views of Raniere, or anyone we are so sure is villainous. We will learn something.

What’s the harm?

Raniere is in prison. Anything he writes or says now is not going to change that.

Keith Raniere Prison USP Tucson Arizona
USP Tucson. Credit: Arrington Watkins Architects

If he has any hope at all, and it is exceedingly slim, of ever getting out of prison, it lies with his appellate lawyers. Not with anything I publish or choose not to publish.

Since Raniere is in prison, he will not be recruiting anybody new to his sex slaver harem, or his life coaching – unless it is in prison, among prisoners [or perhaps guards]. He poses no threat to anyone outside of USP Tucson.

Some say my publishing his words is an insult, or will cause renewed terror to victims. Many of those victims stood up and made public statements at his sentencing. Some of them wrote books, made podcasts, made docuseries.

Many more of them [about 100, I am told] filed victim impact statements with the court under seal seeking restitution for their suffering. About 80 victims have joined in a civil suit, going after Raniere and the Bronfman sisters for millions.

If these victims can subject themselves to depositions and cross-examination at a civil trial, in order to collect money, they can tolerate a little bit of Raniere proclaiming his innocence and claiming his co-defendants are innocent on a website they do not have to read.

Of course, I sympathize with anyone who is a victim of this calculating wolf who pranced about in sheep’s clothing – as an ethicist, a teacher, a compassionate man.

MK10ART’s painting of Keith Raniere [l] and Frank Parlato [r]
I am a victim of him myself, but I did something about it.

I urge any and all victims to adopt a spirit of defiance and say, “Let the fool talk. It won’t change a thing. But perhaps I can learn something new about him and, in fact, understand how I became a victim. This will be good for two reasons at least: One, it should help prevent me from being a victim again to someone else, and two, it possibly might help someone, somewhere, avoid being a victim to such as he.”

For this reason and for others, I am publishing Keith Raniere’s written remarks about his codefendants’ innocence, written from prison.


About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • […] I have explained why I chose to publish this series in From Prison, Keith Raniere: ‘My Codefendants Are Innocent’ Part 1: Attackers Destroyed Our Community! and in Why I Choose to Publish Raniere’s Prison Letters About the ‘Innocence’ of His Codefendants. […]

  • If the DOJ’s power is “unchecked” why isn’t their conviction rate 100%?

    Why are there trials at all?

    You might consider dialing back the hyperbole at least a bit.

    • 97 percent is the same as a dictatorship or Banana Republic. There are also very few trials. 97 percent of defendants plead guilty and do not go to trial.

  • I agree with your stance for justice, Frank. I believe you are exposing the same thing that Trump’s lawyer tried to expose in the interview below. A corrupt media and corrupt government, with nobody holding them accountable.


  • “I believe that prosecutors for the Dept. of Justice often act in a criminal manner but are so unchecked and unmonitored that they can get away with almost anything, even convicting innocent people. ”

    Frank – this looks to me like a pre-emptive attempt to soften us up for your own trial you have pending. It may very well be subconscious. But it seems clear to me that it is weighing on your mind. And though there is no doubt you are not guilty (clare brought this case on you, that is all people need to know), I am sure it is stressful. Perhaps I am wrong but that is how this article read to me.

    • Thanks. I am happy to discuss this matter. I have learned that the Dept. of Justice is misnamed. It should be the Dept. of Injustice. They are unmonitored and unchecked and in most instances, they can use their enormous power to convict anyone they choose. And if anyone is so blind as to think that such awesome power, without any checks and balances, won’t be abused, then they have a faith in human nature that rivals a child’s belief in Santa Claus.

      Yes, when I write such things I am aware that I am a victim of the same injustice system many innocent people have been destroyed by. Only I do not plan to be destroyed.

      • The DOJ is not unchecked de jure. There are three branches of the government–executive, legislative, and judicial. The branches were set up to provide checks and balances, i.e., a separation of powers, so that power is shared among them and one branch cannot overpower the others. The DOJ is an enforcer of the law as it is part of the executive branch. It is not the arbiter of the law which is a power that resides with the judicial branch. The DOJ doesn’t convict anyone. The judicial branch does.

        Besides, the highest department of any government becomes the ultimate regulatory authority for whatever category it oversees. For example, it is incoherent to have a higher judicial authority than the Supreme Court, otherwise, that authority is effectively the “Supreme” Court. You can’t have an infinite regress of authorities, just like you can’t have an infinite regress of per se causes as the causal chain must terminate in a first cause.

        Now if you mean the DOJ can use their alleged “unmonitored and unchecked” power to incriminate anyone and then manipulate the system to make them look guilty when they are innocent, that’s a very serious charge and an extraordinary claim which requires extraordinary evidence. That is something I cannot believe. I can believe that there can be corrupt elements within it that can abuse the power vested in them just like any other organization of people, but to assert nonchalantly that the entire department is corrupt reeks solely of vested interest and a general cynicism of human nature.

  • If the powers that be want Keith’s words scrubbed from the internet, it will happen. Feral House previously published Ted Kazinski – the unibomber. Like Keith, he had some kernels of wisdom among the “crazy”. I’ve read some letters and the manifesto. You can’t find his writing anymore, and probably for good reason. Keith’s words will fade too in time.

    His commentary on the Gulf Oil spill was so rational and poignant, said from a hole in the ground in Colorado.

    • Kazinski’s Manifesto can easily be found on the Internet. I watched the Netflix show about the Unabomber a few months ago and was able to search for it, find it, and read some of it. I didn’t finish reading it, but despite the horrific things he did to people, there is much truth in what he says: e.g., the power process. He’s also one not to make overly general claims as he often points out exceptions and counterpoints. Something you would expect from someone with a real 160+ IQ unlike the former 12-year-old (or whatever) Judo champ who has been the subject of many of the articles on this website.

  • I haven’t read that post yet but in theory, I agree that you should publish his letters. Giving his circular reasoning and nonsensical theories daylight is exactly how to learn from them. I don’t think there’s anything new to gain unless he stops lying, and I don’t see an end to that. Keith’s behavior follows a pattern, and comparing that pattern to other cults and narcissists illuminates the fraud and manipulation.

    Seemingly, from a wealth of statements by former members, they lacked the ability to judge abusive behavior. It was more deplorable to kink shame than to question abuse based on Keith’s dehumanizing theories about women. His letters aren’t going to imbue the ability to learn that difference, and I think it’s one of the key points in prevention.

  • Frank, does it ever dawn on you that you’re always explaining your horrific “journalistic” posts are really written with great journalistic integrity? You shouldn’t have to explain journalistic integrity if it’s real journalistic integrity. You are thirsty to keep the subject alive. You are as guilty as the cult is. Don’t you see this? And all your little minions defending you?….if it walks like a duck, it quacks like a duck….

    • Is that anything like how prosecutors always talk about their high integrity – even when convicting innocent defendants?

      • It’s all a part of the legal theater, you know that. You are aligning yourself with a prosecutor? That deserved a spew alert.

        You proved my point, you’re all about theater and not journalistic integrity. It’s whatever keeps the people coming back to your site, no matter how outlandish or disturbing your posts are.

        I bet people would truly be interested if you talked about your slumlord connection.

    • —And all your little minions defending you?

      I’m not a minion. I’m a lackey.
      BTW are you a 1, 2, or 3 input type of person?

  • Thank you for the reply — much appreciated. I don’t oppose any of the writings you have published, as I find them ALL fascinating!!

    P.S. You couldn’t be further from the truth with your imagination of how I look (my birth certificate says quite the opposite!) and my moniker represents the town I live in… 😊

  • “prosecutors might have committed misconduct. Raniere is claiming this. I do not know enough to agree or disagree. However, I think these allegations are more serious than the allegations against Raniere.”

    Yeah, I’m going to have to disagree with this. First, the “allegations” against Raniere are no longer allegations. He has been tried and convicted by a jury of his peers, in open court. The allegations against him are proven. They are now facts.

    The presumption of innocence no longer applies.

    Next, how “serious” are the allegations Raniere brings? They have already been presented exhaustively in the Frank Report. Exhaustively, exhaustingly, ad nauseum. They are, frankly, ridiculous.

    Raniere is selling some kind of persecution fantasy that mysterious powerful forces conspired against him. Media “hate”, the gov’ment, all the usual suspects. The man’s got a screw loose in his head.

    Raniere’s ravings about his innocence have some value as comic relief. His jailbird ranting about unfair treatment and wrongful conviction is pathetic and feeble, illustrating just what a weak and ordinary type of criminal he is. So predictable and so contemptible.

    Hear one conspiracy theory, and you’ve heard them all. Raniere’s wordy outpourings are getting repetitive. They bore me.

    Oh, one last thing. “I do not know enough to agree or disagree” is like saying, “Some people say the Earth is round, some say it is flat, I do not know enough to judge, so let’s give both sides equal time”.

  • Frank, you are someone who has such an involvement in the situation, on both sides of the story it seems recently. It’s hard to believe that you don’t have enough information to believe there was misconduct or not. What will make it definitive? It seems that all the information needed is available… What are you waiting for to take a side?

    • I am not taking Raniere’s side. I am already against him. What I am reviewing is whether the trial against him was fair. I have serious doubts that any federal prosecution can be fair.

  • The law is really quite simple.
    So simple that even the world’s third smartest man should be able to understand it.

    If you join a criminal conspiracy, you are responsible for all of the acts of your co-conspirators.
    Clare Bronfman is guilty.
    Allison Mack is guilty.
    Nancy Salzman is guilty.
    Lauren Salzman is guilty.
    Even hapless Kathy Russell is guilty.

  • I hear you, Frank. And I understand why you’re publishing the other side. It’s just so unfortunate that the other side never makes any good arguments.

    Raniere is a boring, nonsensical rambler who never makes a point. And in spite of all of the claims to genius, seems to have middling intelligence at best. He’s never written or spoken well. His grammar is awful. He also doesn’t seem to really understand the concepts he blabs on about.

    People in the comments section put him to shame! Isn’t he embarrassed by now? My goodness. I guess he can’t read the comments section. So he just goes on and on in a vacuum. And no one among his followers for years dared call him out on the fact that he doesn’t say anything intelligent, so he never had to sharpen those skills!

    He was so enabled all of those years. … And they still can’t see that all this that time, he was just a disappointing little man behind a curtain pulling levers.

    And then Suneel… He’s doubly boring. He never says anything compelling. And for every article he writes, K.R. Claviger rips it apart expertly as do a lot of the commenters. It’s like watching a chess match between Bobby Fischer and a baboon.

    Can’t you at least get someone who knows the law and is truly impartial– (not another one of Raniere’s pathetic followers!) to analyze the other side of things? Is there no one who can at least make the debate fun to read?

  • FR transitioning into shedding light into another dark space in our existence called the justice system or rather our in-justice system is pretty cool. Frank, can you throw in some information about the IRS? Or where can we see how much of the 3 trillion covid relief went to politicians? Like what was their cut? I too would like to know how the dapper Stone is doing.
    Thanks 😊

  • Marie White and MK10 are interesting artists. The two capture your face very well Mr. Parlato. Marie, if you are reading this, thanks for the depicted painting of the Judo champion with ball and chain. I laughed my butt off.

  • When we stop publishing the writings of bad people, next time we might not recognize the bad person’s intentions anymore.

  • Would Claviger be able to please express his/her view on the probability of Raniere finding an avenue from prison to organize his residual pool of followers to harm society? The question is based on the assumption Raniere will never end up at a supermax facility.

    How about the probability of him getting killed by some hard-core prison gang, even if being assigned to a sex-obsessed prison population (e.g., by hiring an inmate at Raniere’s prison to finish him off)?

    • If he is able to establish “working relationships” with prisoner leaders at USP Tucson — and if he doesn’t lose his email, mail, phone and visitation privileges for long periods of time — then Keith should certainly be able to maintain strong enough contacts with his remaining followers to pretty much re-assume his role as their leader. But, given their history, I doubt that even his most ardent followers would do things to “harm society” because that was never Keith’s MO.

      Throughout his life, Keith has specialized in taking down individuals who were “weaker” than he was. That weakness varied over time — i.e., physically, mentally, financially, etc. — but the pattern was consistent. Sometimes the person was already weaker when Keith first encountered them (NXIVM/ESP sought to recruit people who had various types of “issues”). Other times, he actively worked to make them weaker (“I need to break Allison”).

      So, while Keith might seek to get revenge on specific people that he thinks betrayed him (e.g., Lauren Salzman) or treated him unfairly (e.g., Judge Garaufis), I don’t think he’ll ask his remaining hard-core followers to “harm society”.

      I do not know the composition of the inmates at USP Tucson — and/or how strong the gangs are there. But in a population of 1,500 inmates, it would not be unusual to find at least one who could be motivated to kill another inmate.

      • Sorry, I have not expressed myself clearly enough, by harming society I did not mean simply people generally but also individuals who have defied him and have suffered hugely due to his legal wars. From the situation you are describing, it seems that there are excellent chances for him to maintain his strong grip on Clare, meaning most if not all people who had been hounded through the courts of law all these years, will not get any respite. Clare would continue to inflict the shocking treatment ad infinitum… Effectively victims of all definitions will be forced to gulp down the abuse until this monster dies… That is insane to observe let alone be at the receiving end.

        To me, this is an extremely serious consequence. Frank and many others, I don’t know how you can rest easy reading Claviger’s viewpoint. I don’t think I am being overly pessimistic when saying this, but I completely fail to see any benefit for the brave humans that have “brought down” this Satanic demon. It can’t even be argued he’s been overpowered all that much if the described scenario will materialize.

        I am very disappointed.

        Remember several weeks ago, some contributor named “Peaceful Warrior” or something with “Warrior” was making quite direct remarks to upcoming ‘legal revenge’ if the scum will win on appeal? He does not even HAVE to win it seems…

      • Claviger,

        The YMCA [food]poisoning is the one glaring exception to Kieth’s typical MO.

        Keith had no problem getting two doctors to keep quiet during the poisoning scare. One doctor, in fact, took notes on the victims’ symptoms. In addition, the NXIVM hierarchy mysteriously orders pizza for themselves and did not eat the YMCA banquet food.

        • Good point…Although that was not a fatal incident, it could have been a “trial run” for something much worse later on.

          • I believe that the State of New York in a disciplinary procedure against ex-Doctor Brandon Porter it was found to be a norovirus outbreak.

            Norovirus, sometimes referred to as the winter vomiting bug, is the most common cause of gastroenteritis.[1][6] Infection is characterized by non-bloody diarrhea, vomiting, and stomach pain.[2][3] Fever or headaches may also occur

            Disease Outbreak at Vanguard Week
            In addition to not following the law on human subject experiments, Porter failed to report to the NYS Department of Health an outbreak of disease at Vanguard Week 2016 when hundreds of followers of the Vanguard – including 50 children – got some kind of gastrointestinal illness.

            At his hearing, Porter alternately told the board that it might have been food poisoning and that he also suspected it might be a contagious disease.

            At his hearing, Porter alternately told the board that it might have been food poisoning and that he also suspected it might be a contagious disease.

            Porter told the board that the goal of Vanguard Week was for NXIVM members to “be joyful” and celebrate “humanity.”

            While attending this joyful event, Porter admitted he became aware that many attendees – including a pregnant woman, infants and young children – became ill with a wide-spread gastrointestinal illness suffering symptoms of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain.

            Porter admitted he suspected the cause of the illness was a virus, possibly Norovirus, which is contagious and can lead to large, quick outbreaks of the disease. Still, he chose not to report it to the NYS Department of Health.

      • –I doubt that even his most ardent followers would do things to “harm society” because that was never Keith’s MO.

        Lolwut? Of course his MO is to harm “society” when it comes to his enemies. Why do you think he’s in prison?

        It’s not called paying back your “debt to society” for nothing.

        And I agree with “An observer”. He needs to be cut off from all communication with respect to his remaining followers. It is through his many (wealthy) followers he harmed those he considered his enemies in society. To allow him to perpetrate his actions behind prison walls defeats the entire purpose of a RICO conviction.

        • In my original response, I was trying to distinguish between harm that is directed at individuals and harm that is directed at society in general (e.g., a terrorist attack). I agree that Keith harmed many individuals — and that he also harmed society in many ways (e.g., the corruption of public officials in the NDNY) — but I don’t think he would direct his remaining loyalists to undertake a terrorist attack.

          • Claviger,

            It is not a matter of you not understanding my main point in my second post above. For some reason you choose to ignore it. If Keith is allowed and will be allowed until the end of his life, to keep Clare in his clenched grip, all this is for nothing. All the frivolous, nightmarish lawsuits will continue, lives will be destroyed. It will be a certainty.

            Am I being unrealistic? Will anything be done to severely limit his control of Clare? Or is this a totally irrelevant question?

            Frank? Do you really not see a problem here? In the affirmative case, if you haven’t given consideration to it… maybe it would be good to start thinking of something preventive?

          • I do not know if Clare is funding Keith. Her finances are being monitored closely. Much of her money is in trust funds. I think she is still loyal to Keith. They may be able to communicate through their respective lawyers.

          • If Clare were averse to having Keith involved in her life, the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) would do all that it can to cut off his communication with her. But, insofar as I know, that is not the case.

            The situation you’re concerned about is somewhat similar to the situation involving Charles Manson and some of his followers. Although the authorities may have been concerned that Manson would continue to influence his followers in negative ways, they could not cut off all such communications unless one or more of Manson’s followers requested that sort of intervention.

            If, however, the BOP found a communication from Keith to Clare in which he instructed her to menace someone by filing a baseless lawsuit, then the agency could bring a disciplinary action against Keith. And if was found guilty, then his communications with Clare could be temporarily suspended — or, depending on the severity of the charge, permanently curtailed (Even if that were to happen, there are still ways for inmates to get letters sent to outsiders).

          • Claviger-

            I understood the “context” of what you said and I agree with your thoughts on the matter. Currently, I’d put the odds at 1 in 10,000 of Raniere doing something horrific.

            The Dr. Porter and Dr. Roberts YMCA debacle is creepy to say the least.

            Dr. Roberts is seldom mentioned these days….
            Do you believe she should be able to keep her medical license?

          • I believe that Dr. Roberts’ medical license should be suspended — and that she should be ordered to do a substantial amount of community service in order to have it reinstated (e.g., 2,000 hours sounds about right). After that, I think her medical work should be subject to peer review for a period of three years.

            I believe this type of sentence is appropriate for her role in the DOS fiasco — and, as you’ll note, it does not involve any type of incarceration. Nor does it make her unemployable for the rest of her life.

      • Klav,
        I do not think Keith would sic his followers on current enemies due to his current position. But I think his cult following would do so on their own just to please him. Just because there is no solid proof of his followers hurting people on his shit list, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Think Gina, Kristen Snyder, and the rest of the lost gals. No doubt that there are some we don’t know about.
        Remember, you are dealing with minds unlike our own.

        Over and out.

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.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

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 premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083
Email: frankparlato@gmail.com


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