In their recent rebuttals to my articles about FBI agents tampering with evidence in the Keith Raniere case, Bangkok, Sherizzy and Aristotle’s Sausage all missed the point.
In his article, Sherizzy writes, “Your opinion that it is easy to tamper with the data is your opinion. The expert at trial held a different opinion, which is not perjury.”
This is not a matter of opinion.
FBI Senior Forensic Examiner Brian Booth testified multiple times that EXIF data was “difficult to modify.” This is simply not true. Modifying EXIF data is a basic thing that anyone can Google and figure out how to do. Every forensic expert I’ve asked has agreed with me on this. Steve Abrams, who is a forensics expert and cyber lawyer, wrote in his expert statement, “Examiner Booth either purposely misled the fact finders or is simply not sufficiently knowledgeable about the facts to which he testified. The former would be perjury. If the latter is true, that may be considered perjury by omission, as he projected more about the subject than he did.”
EXIF data was the crux of the government’s forensic argument for why the Cami pics were taken in 2005. The reliability of EXIF data is not a small fact to have “misled” the fact finders [the jury] about.
In his article, Aristotle’s Sausage writes, “First, Google Dr. Munegowda. He lives and works in India. So how does he have access to the relevant memory device that’s currently locked up as evidence in a US federal facility? Neither alleged expert is working for Raniere’s actual defense team, which means they would have no access to the evidence.”
Mr. Sausage ignored the fact that it was revealed in cross-examination that dates on the camera card were altered on 9/19/18, while in FBI custody, by some unknown person. Booth had no notes about who did this. This is not trivial evidence. This is one of the most important exhibits in the entire case. And it went missing and then arrived at the FBI forensics lab in an unsealed cellophane bag?
Dr. Munegowda analyzed the file system data – a listing of the file names, dates, sizes and other metadata. When the forgers are sloppy and the analyst is skilled, that is more than enough information from which to detect tampering, if tampering did occur.
In his article, “Bangkok: Why Doesn’t Suneel Condemn Raniere Over Cami”, Bangkok gleefully writes: “I’d like to point out that Suneel has just contradicted his own previous statements about why he still associates with Keith. Suneel previously said that he would NOT support anybody that, in his own judgment, may have harmed an underage child (which, IMO, would include having underage sex with a child who cannot realistically give consent; regardless of whether or not such sex can be charged as a crime).”
There’s no contradiction. If Keith ever admitted to the allegations or if he was found guilty based on solid evidence, I would denounce him personally but continue to fight for his due process rights, which were violated. As of now, I don’t know the truth of these particular allegations.
What I do believe, based on analyzing the file system data and the process irregularities, is that FBI agents, perhaps in cahoots with some of the prosecutors, doctored the digital evidence to bring a child pornography charge and win their case against Keith.
Why would prosecutors and federals engage in corruption like this to win? Because their other charges were baseless, judging by what they presented at trial. For example, what was the actual ‘labor’ in the so-called forced labor charge? It was one white, adult woman, an actress from an affluent family, who transcribed 5 whole hours of video for a memorial and did the grueling work of reading 55 essays.
Lastly, let me remark that I am not one of those who believes we should defund the police or end law enforcement. I actually believe most cops are good, brave souls deserving of our respect and gratitude. I think that maybe – although I am not so sure of this – that even the majority of prosecutors are good too. But their immense power and lack of oversight makes it too easy to cheat.
And there is little doubt in my mind that Keith Raniere’s prosecutors and the federal agents involved in his case used their power to cheat to win.