Editor’s note: Of late, Suneel Chakravorty has been defending his friend, convicted felon Keith Alan Raniere, and perhaps has an issue worth investigating: Were the Cami pictures used against Raniere at trial tampered with to sustain the child porn charge?
We have a long way to go to investigate this issue to even get to anything like a preponderance of evidence. But I think it is possible that we will be able to get closer to the truth. There are at least two likely scenarios: Either the FBI actually did find the Cami nude pics just before trial, on the hard drive they seized almost a year earlier and they were actually nude pics of Cami when she was 15, and they presented the truth as they knew it or they tampered with the hard drive or the Cami photos in some way to make it appear that this late found bombshell evidence that essentially singlehandedly ended the defense and the resolve of all the codefendants was authentic, even though it was not. Suneel suggests they could have been pics of Cami when she was older, and legal, and the dates or the photos were altered to make it look like she was underage.
Recently, two commenters on Frank Report criticized Suneel and Suneel has once again taken the time to rebut his detractors.
Bangkok wrote: We Are Going to Need a Full Psych Team to Deprogram Suneel
Here is Suneel’s reply:
First, I’d like to respond to Bangkok:
In Bangkok’s rebuttal, I don’t think he responded directly to any of the points I raised. Instead, he made claims that were unrelated to my argument.
For example, Bangkok writes, “In Suneel’s case, he has established that it’s BEYOND THE REALM OF POSSIBILITY (totally impossible) that Keith could have broken the law and/or bedded a 15-year-old minor.”
This is false. I haven’t made any claims about Keith’s actions regarding the veracity of the underage sex allegation with Camila, and I have stated before that if any such allegation were true, I would support charges being brought and prosecuted fairly.
My claim is about FBI agents tampering with digital evidence to bring a child pornography charge.
Here are a few of the points, restated:
- The break in the chain of custody, camera card arriving in an unsealed bag
- The alteration of data on the camera card on 9/19/18, by an unknown person, with no documentation around the incident
- The alteration of metadata and dates on the hard drive, which happens to support the government’s argument
- What appears to be [and I know it is a strong word] “Perjury” on the part of FBI senior forensic examiner Brian S Booth, regarding the reliability of EXIF data, which was the forensic crux of the government’s case.
Bangkok also made speculations about my personal life that are wholly irrelevant to my arguments. Why not address my actual arguments?
I may share more of my personal and professional background in future articles, so the readership gets to know me better.
However, the purpose of these particular articles is to raise public awareness of possible government corruption regarding the child pornography charge in USA v. Keith Raniere, and for us to honestly and vigorously debate the issue.
To that end, if I have made a logical leap at any juncture or have stated something improperly as a fact when it is not, just point it out specifically.
Now for Sherizzy’s post.
Sherizzy writes, “First, you are claiming that you know more than an expert. Not buying it.”
Where did I make this claim?
“Second, the fact that the photos were accessed does not mean that they were significantly tampered with and the dates altered.”
I agree that improper access does not mean they were tampered with. The point I made was that it had been established by forsensic experts, Dr. Munegowda and Steve Abrams, that EXIF metadata, including dates, of pictures on the hard drive had been manually altered, in their October 2020 reports.
“As far as planting photos on Raniere’s hard drive and creating a 2005 folder, that is just ridiculous and does not deserve a reply.”
The folder names containing 2005 dates were brought up as forensic evidence. That is ridiculous, as folder names can be easily altered.
“Third, the reliability of the photos goes to the weight of the evidence and not admissibility.”
From former FBI agents familiar with the evidence handling protocols, I have been told that not write-blocking is a critical issue that sometimes can affect the admissibility of the evidence.
“Fourth, Raniere’s defense team was heavily influenced by his input, if not completely controlled by it.”
I find this very unlikely. What is your basis for this? In a February 5, 2019 bail hearing, it was established that Keith was denied legal visits for much of January, even prior to the fire at MDC that resulted in the power outage. It is well known that inmates who get pre-trial detention have a much harder time preparing for and participating actively in their defense.
“At trial, Raniere did not dispute that they were from 2005. From what I remember, Raniere’s attorney Marc Agnifilo tried to get them thrown out because they were so old. Also, Agnifilo could have called his own experts at trial to challenge the prosecution’s expert.”
I believe this point is true. As an aside, let’s say it’s true that the defense could have more rigorously cross-examined and investigated. If FBI agents were involved in fabricating this evidence, as I claim, and have provided evidence for, that is far worse in my opinion than a failure of the defense counsel.
“I am sure if Raniere believed they were not from 2005, he would have made sure that his lawyers did this, but he did not. That is very telling.”
You are assuming Keith had significant input into or control of the process, which I challenge above. My experience with attorneys, and experts in general, is they like to run the show.
“Fifth, Closing arguments are just that, argument. They are not evidence. That means, aside from some basic rules, the prosecutor is permitted to argue what is in evidence. Raniere’s lawyers were free to do the same. Again, closing arguments are not evidence.”
I did not claim closing arguments are evidence, but it is interesting they repeated the lie about EXIF metadata. Remember, the falsehood alleged by Booth that EXIF metadata is difficult to modify was an essential fact that went to the reliability of the evidence.
“Prosecutors only charge what they believe they can prove beyond a reasonable doubt.
I recommend reading some of the below links. I am not a lawyer, but even I am aware that sometimes prosecutors overcharge in order to pressure a defendant into taking a guilty plea.
– Horizontal and Vertical Overcharging: https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/159597225.pdf
– An older article: https://www.ojp.gov/ncjrs/virtual-library/abstracts/prosecutorial-overcharging
“If you are going to continue making baseless arguments, as I am sure you will, just remember that you lose credibility with every frivolous argument that you make.”
It is amazing to me that yours and Bangkok’s rebuttal do not mention Booth’s perjury about metadata, which was the key piece of the government’s forensic argument of when the pictures were taken.
“That is why you have lost nearly all credibility on FR.”
I don’t think I had much credibility to begin with, and my sense from the comments mainly being personal attacks from a select group of commenters is that my credibility with the general readership is rising. But I’ll let you all be the judge.
A final point: some commenters claim that I am bullying now-31-year-old Camila or bullying women in general, and calling for me to be canceled.
Calling a man an abuser or a bully is the quickest way to discredit him, and should be done carefully and with evidence. I don’t believe I am doing any such thing. If you believe I am, please point out a specific instance of it so I can address or respond to it.
The stance I have taken is that the critical evidence in the case, the alleged child pornography, was tampered with – implying that the naked pictures of Camila were not on the hard drive with the dates as presented (otherwise there’s no need to tamper) – and FBI Examiner Brian S. Booth perjured himself about EXIF metadata, which was an essential fact of the government’s argument which AUSA Moira Penza and Mark Lesko repeated in their closing arguments.
For the record, I am NOT claiming that naked pictures of Camila were not ever taken in 2005 or that underage sex did NOT occur. There is no credible basis for me to claim this.
However, if no naked pictures of Camila were taken in 2005 and the now 31-year-old Camila lied in her victim impact statement about this fact, rather than laying the blame at Camila’s feet, I would look to the prosecutors in the case (Moira Kim Penza, Tanya Hajjar, and Mark Lesko), who may have pressured Camila to do so.
After all, federal prosecutors have the practically unchecked ability to do so by threatening indictment, whether justified or not.
Keith Raniere in his library where, subsequent to his arrest, the hard drive was found.