A photo of a Lexar camera card similar to the one seized at the executive library of Keith Raniere.

Part 1: Cami Pics ‘Tampered but True?’

In this series, “Tampered but True?” I am going to examine the Cami pics – not the pics themselves, which are illegal to possess, but the evidence surrounding them.

This is Part 1.

We will examine the possibility of tampering by the FBI and whether it is true, nonetheless, that Keith Raniere sexually exploited Cami when she was 15.  Both might be true.

What happens then?

As readers know, Suneel Chakravorty, a staunch friend of Raniere’s, has been trying to prove that the nude pics of Cami presented at the trial were tampered with by the FBI.

The tampering, he believes, concerned changing dates, and possibly altering pictures, to make a then-adult and legal Cami appear to have been underage when the photos were taken.

Cami is now 31. She was 13 when she met Raniere in 2003.

The evidence of Raniere’s abuse of Cami comes from three devices: a hard drive, a camera, and a camera card.

Some 20 nude pictures of Cami were introduced as evidence of predicate acts of racketeering: possession of child porn and sexual exploitation of a minor.

Raniere is 30 years Cami’s senior.

The photos, the prosecution alleged, were taken on two dates in November 2005, when Cami was 15 and found on a hard drive that was seized by the FBI from Raniere’s library in a townhouse in Half Moon, NY.

Should Suneel Chakravorty prove that the FBI tampered with the Cami photos, the entire case would be called into question.

From what I have seen so far, Suneel has a way to go to actually prove the FBI tampered with the Cami photos, yet there are curious circumstances that suggest further inquiry.

The most significant circumstance is that the Cami nude pics were, arguably, the single most damning evidence in the case. If they have been improperly dated and Cami was not underage when the nudes were taken, this blows a moral hole in the prosecution and may require a new trial.

Could they be that stupid?

Normally, such a wild accusation as FBI tampering with critical evidence would be dismissed out of hand.

But, in this case, during the trial, FBI Senior Forensic Examiner Brian Booth testified that the FBI lost custody of the camera card, by which, the government allegedly discerned that the Cami nude photographs recovered from the hard drive were taken on November 2 and 24, 2005, making Cami underage when the nude photos were taken.

FBI expert witness Booth did not – or could not – explain how it was possible that the camera card was lost while in FBI custody, how someone apparently accessed it, who that someone was, or, while it was lost and before it was recovered, what the entirety of the changes were that were done by the unknown person or persons to the camera card.

He did confirm that dates were changed by someone, but he does not know who that someone was.

He did not say how the camera card was recovered after being lost by the FBI. Indeed, he could not or did not say who gave him the camera card from which the dates of the photos were, in part, determined.

Frank Report will be presenting more of Booth’s testimony in subsequent posts, but here is one telling exchange:

He is being cross-examined by Raniere’s defense attorney, Paul DerOhannesian.

Q The metadata for JPEGs 224, 225, 227 to 241, and 243 [Cami pics] from Government Exhibit 524, the media card, changed after it was collected [seized by the FBI] on March 27, 2018, correct?

A The access dates appear to be.

Q The metadata for Exhibit 524, the media card, reflects that the digital evidence on Exhibit 524 changed while it was in the possession of the FBI, correct?

A Which — which metadata are you specifically —
Q The date accessed.
A You’re talking from the file system?
Q I’m talking about the data that we just looked at.
A That file system data appears to have been changed.
Q When we say “changed,” it was changed while it was in the possession of the FBI?

A If I’m taking the dates on when we received it, it would appear so.

Q And the dates that you received just now came from your report, correct?

A Yes.

Q That you generated as evidence in the case against — United States against Keith Raniere, correct?

A Yes.

Q The goal of forensic examination is to preserve the electronic data, so that the metadata doesn’t change, correct?

A Correct.

Q Do you know the name of the person who accessed the SD or media card, Exhibit 524, on September 19, 2018?

A No, I do not.

Q Do you have any record in any piece of evidence or notes that reflects the accessing of Government Exhibit 524 by any representative of the FBI on September 19, 2018?

A No, I do not.

***

That tells a shocking story. It may not seem like much but it does mean a lot.  The FBI lost custody of the media card, someone accessed it, and their expert does not know who it was.

I do not know how often the FBI loses custody of seized items that wind up being the very linchpin of their case, but I would imagine it is rare, to say the least.

Jennifer Bonjean

Keith Raniere’s appellate attorney, Jennifer Bonjean, has said in the appeal that there will be a Rule 33 motion concerning the reliability of the FBI witness, Brian Booth’s testimony.

 


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Frank Parlato

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  • “That tells a shocking story. It may not seem like much but it does mean a lot. The FBI lost custody of the media card, someone accessed it, and their expert does not know who it was.

    I do not know how often the FBI loses custody of seized items that wind up being the very linchpin of their case, but I would imagine it is rare, to say the least.” Frank Parlato

    This passage raises the issue of chain of custody.

    Losing custody of evidence raises the serious question of whether the evidence was altered.

    We could be looking at a retrial and the photos might not be admissible.

  • When everyone mentions that the dates were changed, what dates are they referring to? The dates of access or creation? From the NXIVM 5’s comments and articles, I have got the impression that they are saying the dates of the files creation were changed: i.e., the dates that the photos were taken. Is that even possible and is that what they have been implying? I am confused with the dates issue. Is it really that the access dates changed only?

  • Hardly shocking. It seems from the somewhat confused testimony above that someone accessed the data card while it was in FBI custody.

    There’s nothing in the above testimony indicating that the data card ever went missing.

    Evidently someone looked at the data (pictures). Why? Who knows.

    Evidence rooms, from what I can tell, are restricted access. At the level of “authorized employees only”. How many FBI and law enforcement employees had access? Dozens? How many items are stored in there, hundreds? Thousands?

    Maybe somebody picked up the wrong box of evidence. “Wait, this isn’t the thumb drive I was looking for!”

    Shocking? I don’t think so.

    It’s a nothingburger. Raniere’s appeal doesn’t even mention this detail of the accessed data card. Because it leads nowhere and it’s trivial.

  • The evidence is not limited to the camera. There is a living breathing human being named Cami. And there are texts, emails, medical records and other people ( Daniella for one example) backing up the evidence.

  • This focus on file access date change is so lame with respect to anyone who knows the least bit about computers.

    It means nothing. If the FBI wanted to alter anything, they would’ve altered more significant data, such as file content, creation times, etc., would’ve reverted any access date change as well so as to make it appear that it never changed, would’ve never admitted to anything, and would’ve not admitted to (or covered up) the alleged loss of chain of custody, etc. This also assumes they could do any of those technical things.

    What a waste of time.

    These “articles” are just here to give some superficial credibility to some conspiracy BS that has no basis.

    • —These “articles” are just here to give some superficial credibility to some conspiracy BS that has no basis.

      What are you so afraid of? Nobody is taking you for a ride.

      .

      • Why is the new first go-to always “afraid” now? Or ” fear”. I don’t get that impression of commenters being scared at all. Bored. Fed up. Mildly irritated? Slightly amused?

        No one is “afraid” of DOS. Keith. Nxivm. Suneel. Any of it.

        The only scared people are in prison, like vanguard & Clare or waiting to be locked up like his trash co-defendants.

        Why would people commenting on a blog be frightened? It’s nonsense. We aren’t on trial. We aren’t leftover cult members.

        Get a grip on your self-importance.

        • —Why would people commenting on a blog be frightened? It’s nonsense. We aren’t on trial. We aren’t leftover cult members.
          Get a grip on your self-importance.

          What are your issues? I find myself, honestly confused by your tone, directed at the article as well as to myself.
          What do you want from the article? I feel Frank is attempting to convey his feelings that due-process was not granted to the defendant. I don’t understand the “conspiracy” angle. What’s the issue? What is it you want?

        • Anon 5:26pm-

          Please try to keep an open-mind. I believe you will have a different perspective, once you see the data.

          • Isn’t it hypocritically ironic how the NXIVM dead-enders tell others to keep an “open mind” and to “look at the data”, but they never do the same for the guilt of their master?

          • Anon 4:35

            The media-flash-drive scandal, and the vast array of technology involved, is a complex subject. I do not believe you are technologically savvy enough to have such a sharp opinion. Please stick to making pejorative, Mr. Dead Ender

    • I also think these posts give superficial credibility to Suneel ‘s conspiracy.
      The access dates of the photos changed. So what? Is there evidence the photos have bad lighting and the scar did not show? Is there evidence that the FBI photoshopped the image and removed the scar? Is there evidence that the FBI Changed the creation date of the photo?

      What about all the other evidence around Raniere and Cami sex? Like the abortion paperwork, Dani’s testimony, the other pictures from 2005 found on the drive?

Frank Parlato Investigates

Frank Parlato Investigates

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 featured prominently on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and acted as lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” He was credited in the Starz docuseries, 'Seduced,' for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Parlato has 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, which was ironic since many credit Parlato as being one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

If the whole world stands against you sword in hand, would you still dare to do what you think is right?

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