The Other Side of the Appeal – By the Man Who Most Wanted to See Raniere Convicted – Part #1 – on Judge Garaufis

Judge Nicholas Garaufis

Keith Raniere is appealing his conviction. You can read his appeal right here.

It is now high time for me to weigh in. And I will do so in a series of posts.

I am not a lawyer, but I understand the case fairly well. My views are informed by speaking with a number of attorneys, including Marc Agnifilo, Raniere’s lead attorney at his trial.

My view is hopefully NOT informed by my role in the conviction of Raniere or my longstanding battles with him. I have every reason to dislike Raniere and if it were possible for me to actually dislike anyone, it would be Keith, for the profoundly dishonest role he had in my life.

I’d like to think of this series as one based on my regard for due process.

Keith Raniere and I were once friends and I worked as a consultant for him for several months before he fired me.

Before advancing my arguments, I’d like to state I admire the trial judge, Nicholas G. Garaufis, whose conduct is being judged in the appeal. I know him only from the trial, which this publication covered daily, and from his writings during the course of the case, which is still ongoing. Restitution hearings are next.

I believe he is a good man, dignified and wonderfully educated. He is, I think, rather old school, which I am myself. He can be humorous and discreet and grave. He can be subtle as hell and I witnessed him hitting attorneys over the head with a hammer when they were not as subtle as he.

My favorite quote of the judge was uttered when he addressed Agnifilo at the sentencing of Raniere and spoke about Raniere’s 14-year-old son, Gaelyn, whom I know quite well and who lived in an apartment below mine twice – in 2014-15, and again in 2019.

Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis sentenced Keith Raniere to 120 years in prison, which might prompt Raniere to exclaim, ” I don’t get no respect” and he did not, not from this judge at sentencing.

The judge said, “I’m just a local guy here in Brooklyn. But you’ve got a 14-year-old child who’s never been supported by his father who has been busy working the commodities markets for tens of millions of dollars and can’t find it in his heart to send a few bucks to his child. Why should anyone look upon that person as someone who is worthy of respect?”

As I wrote before, I think the judge told me more about himself in this statement than anything that he might have said in as few words.

He’s a Brooklyn guy and in Brooklyn, it’s about respect. He dismisses Keith as riff-raff or scum because what kind of a man does not support his own son?

I personally witnessed Keith terrorize his son and his son’s mother, sending private detectives to hunt them down. Then instead of serving the mother the papers for custody he told the detectives they were hired to serve once they found her, he dismissed them and then hired two actors – or possibly assassins – to befriend the mother and child and set them up, spying on them all the while.

Then he hired another detective or pseudo detective, one Michelle Gomez, to terrorize the mother with threatening texts – hundreds of texts – about me, no less. Kristin and her son were living at my house where they were safe,

Michelle, [hired  by Keith] not disclosing who she was, send a barrage of threatening texts to the mother, to the effect that they were out to get me – not her – but that if she did not flee from my protection, she would come to grief alongside me.

She went to her supposed friends – the people she met who approached her on kayaks  – who were hired by Keith [and paid by Clare Bronfman] to seek their help for I was out of town when the texts started coming in.

What these two planned to do was anybody’s guess, but with my help and others, the mother, Kristin Keeffe, and her and Raniere’s son escaped their clutches and slipped away leaving their home of a year and a half to flee to find another hiding place.

They had been found out.

I’m just a Buffalo guy from the West Side, but why should anyone look upon Raniere as someone who is worthy of respect who would put his son on the run, with his mother in terror?

If he had wanted custody, he could have served the papers. He wanted to terrorize her.  And he did.

So, yeah, Judge Garaufis had Keith’s number. And he was not wrong about that number which I think officially is 57005-177 to which Garaufis added another figure — 120-years.

So, if you see me at times suggesting a point of view that seems to support Raniere’s appeal, that might seem to oppose the good judge, know it not to be confirmation bias.

Mine tends in the opposite direction.

Stay tuned for Part 2.


About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • Frank-

    I am looking forward to the rest of the series of articles.

    RE: Keith Raniere’s 120 year sentence:

    If I knew nothing about the criminal case, other than the crimes of which Raniere was convicted, I’d be of the opinion that Raniere’s sentence was grossly unjust.

    Under that hypothetical, I would be of the opinion that Raniere deserved around 20 years.

    Do you, at all, feel similarly?

  • Frank, I’m glad you’re bringing this up again because the terrorism of Kristin is to my mind, one of the most frightening aspects of this story.

    Surely, it must be illegal to hire actors with a motive to earn the trust of an unsuspecting person?

    I wonder if K.R. Claviger could weigh in as to whether these types of acts are criminal?

    I already read that it’s not illegal to hire a private detective if all they do is monitor a person’s activity in public. But deliberately hiring people to infiltrate a person’s private life seems really questionable to me.

    Also, if she was being threatened, isn’t that wrong, for sure?

    I’m really interested to know why none of these things were included in the charges against Keith?

    • Once again I’m reminded of Le Carre’s Drummer Little Girl because of the hiring of actors. It seems to me that Raniere’s world of insensitive crimes is better understood when looking at them through fiction, science fiction and videogames…


        I’m sure a brief enquiry would turn up some convincing duos, trios, quartets and even a few star turns..

        In the UK the hiring of ‘claques’ has been a thing since Greene trolled Shakespeare. Raises an interesting legal query though,
        If you hire actors to perform the part of, say, charming innocent-seeming neighbourly kayakers, whose motive is to kidnap, how might they be culpable for an actual crime of abduction? If you hired an actor to say, play the part of a kindly relative who must let an employer know, off-record, how someone is unreliable/thieving/a drug user—how might they be culpable for character defamation or slander? Then there’s hiring actors to test the loyalty of spouses etc. hmmm.

        • Thanks, that point interests me a lot. By the way, I loved your mention of UK ‘claques’. I had it related to the french verb “claques” which, in it’s figurative sense, refers to a group of people attending a show for free but with the obligation to applaud following the indications of the person who recruits them.

        • I found the following definition of the term “actor” in the Dictionary of Untranslatables by Barbara Cassin: ACTOR, THESPIAN, COMEDIAN
          FRENCH acteur, personnage, comédien
          GERMAN Schauplatz, Schauspieler, Akteur, Person
          GREEK prosôpon [πϱόσωπον], hupokritês [ὑποϰϱιτής]
          ITALIAN attore, comico, maschera
          LATIN persona, actor, histrio
          In seventeenth-century French, the word acteur still referred both
          to the dramatic character who acts and whose actions the play “represents”
          (in conformity with the notion of mimêsis praxeôn [μίμησις
          πϱᾶξεων] in Aristotle’s Poetics), and to the person who plays the
          character onstage and whom we call the “actor.” The character was
          subsequently differentiated from the actor. In Italy, it was only in the
          eighteenth century, under the probable influence of the development
          in French, that the word attore, which up to that point had
          signified solely the character who acts, took on the meaning of a
          stage actor, whereas the word personnaggio was established to designate what French calls a personnage and English a “character.”
          All of these shifts in meaning take place within the semantic field of
          the Latin language as it was constituted in the domain of rhetoric.
          The ambiguity and evolution of the word “actor” are in fact related
          to the term’s double heritage, theatrical and rhetorical: on the
          stage, the actor is the person who puts on a voice-amplifying mask
          (prosôpon [πϱόσωπоν]) and thus takes on the traits of the character
          he represents. In this sense, his action is a passion, he is inhabited
          by a character. But the actor is also an orator, whose actio, gestural
          and vocal, is an esteemed art: he acts out his text and his character,
          which without him would have no effect. He is then an actor in the
          active sense of the term, the coauthor of the effect produced.

          • This is intriguing, Anna. I wonder if it would be admissible in a court of law as proof of an ‘actor’ being an abettor, conspirator or accomplice? Culpable under the rule of joint enterprise?

          • In response to key worker: It’s intriguing, intricate and with a lot of disturbing ramifications. For instance, in the case of Cambridge Analytica’s implementation of political campaigns based in segmented distribution of information through social media, ¿who are then the actor and the author at the moment in which the citizen emits her/his vote?

      • I enjoyed John Le Carre’s book
        The Constant Gardner. Picked it up at an airport bookstore. The ending is deep.

  • Nicki Clyne has a new social media site.

    Nicki Clyne logo
    Join the Nicki Clyne Сommunity

    Become a part of the movement. Get exclusive content. Interact with Nicki Clyne.

    Nicki Clyne has worked as an actor, writer, news analyst and television host, but it wasn’t until she experienced the failings of the criminal justice system first-hand that she decided to dedicate herself to much needed advocacy efforts in the field. She works directly with people inside prison, advocates for free speech and due process, and speaks on a number of current, often controversial, issues. Oh, and she was part of NXIVM and DOS, which landed her dead center in an international media scandal and high-profile federal trial… and she’s just getting started.

    Community Guidelines
    Please respect the following community guidelines to maintain an enjoyable, thought-provoking and constructive environment:

    Keep conversation respectful, without personal attacks

    Own your opinions. We all have them, but opinions are not facts, and should not be presented as such

    Don’t blow up other members’ feeds. If someone isn’t responding to you, let it be

    No pornography

    Keep out behavior that could be seen as trolling/spamming

    Relax, be yourself (no one else is qualified), and enjoy!

      • It’s an interesting idea NiceGuy. How many people would pay $5 to see nicki’s hairy pussy and keith’s brand next to it? Might be her only source of income . But I’m guessing she’s still saving her virtue for vanguard’s release 120 years from now. By then, that’ll be one very dried up, wrinkled pussy.

        • LMAO!!!

          I don’t know what it is, but Nicki is definitely up to something. She is shrewder than people give her credit.
          Ask Frank, I’m sure he’ll agree with me.

          If Nicki can get 100 various customers a week spending $35 that’s $3,500 a week.

          Now imagine the amount of nerdy-perverts that exist in the world. Nicki can easily make over $182,000 year. It ain’t a stretch.

          Who’s laughing, us or Nicki Clyne?

    • Shadow. I checked it. Oh, my word!

      Join and become part of our group it says.

      I guess the recruitment into a private and elite group never ends.

      These people are such the opposite of the type of good-natured and generous folk who actually DO improve the world. For them, it’s all about secrets and withholding and being elite.

      Yuck. What a bunch of assholes.

      Their stupid DOS website makes me wanna barf, too. As if their bios and resumes and blogs prove they are actually good people.

      They actively mocked human slavery and directly participated in propagating it.

      It was never some playful bdsm, such as, ooh, just you and me, and you did a naughty thing and now you’re gonna get spanked! It was literally signing over bank accounts, deeds to homes, ownership of firstborn children, and collecting blackmail material.

      For those who care about freedom and liberty, what this group has done and what they believe in is just wrong to the core.

      • Oh. I just realized I missed something important about Nicki Clyne’s new group and I have a question. It says no pornography.

        Does that mean pictures of my face and vulva aren’t required to join this one or do they just ask later?

        • My2cents.

          Ha ha ha! Good one!

          And more hypocrisy. I thought all of the DOS porn was just healthy, normal, routine, sexual blackmail that was super helpful to the uniformly irresponsible and spoiled women. Super helpful for forcing innately defective women to keep their lifetime vow of obedience.

          And super helpful for Keith’s impotency.

          Why would Nicki outlaw such an important positive tool as explicit porn for the advancement of all women and world peace?

    • Excuse my ignorance, but why hasn’t Nicki Clyne been indicted while Allison Mack has? Weren’t them both part of the inner circle of DOS along with Lauren Salzman, who was also indicted?

  • Also not a lawyer.

    But it is my understanding that appeals are mostly about the judge’s conduct, whether he followed the proper protocols of the court.

    There are 2 things I’m aware of about this judge’s conduct that should be appealed: There are also many more.

    1. Accepting evidence upon which the chain of custody was broken – as testified by the FBI Property & Evidence Examiner himself. .

    2. Cutting off Lauren Salzman’s testimony, and then saying – 3 times – to the defense attorney that if the defense didn’t get the verdict they wanted, they could file an appeal. This is a judge who knew he was doing something wrong – at the time he was doing it.

    So yes, everyone can say how much a a scumbag human being Raniere is, and what an angel the judge is, but when it comes to due process none of those things matter. In fact those kind of hatreds and adorations get in the way of due process.

    120 years: a sentence that was more than even the prosecution was asking for..

    This is not justice, Frank, and this judge was on a revenge trip. He did a very bad job.

    This needs to be corrected.


    • You’re “analysis” definitively proves that you weren’t lying when you indicated “Also not a lawyer”.

      • As the lawyer awoke from surgery, he asked, “Why are all the blinds drawn?” The nurse answered, “There’s a fire across the street, and we didn’t want you to think you had died.””

          • It must be cult word salad. Say something that tries to sound deep but it doesn’t actually mean anything at all.

            Like this quote, “He who has the most joy wins.” As if there is some general competition that is occurring between all people to have the most joy.

          • Alonzo is one of those guys that thinks everyone is a fool…..

            ……and doesn’t realize he’s a joke.

          • I guess it’s ment as a joke: the point is that lawyers end in hell once dead (hence the fire…)
            another one: what are 10 lawyers at the bottom of the ocean? a good start…….
            to be clear: these are jokes, Not my opinion on lawyers….

          • The guy who condemns hatred in one breath, makes a nasty lawyer joke directed personally at you with his next!

            This kind of illogic, this inability to pick up on a contradiction, seems endemic in cults. It’s why a clown like Raniere could keep his loyal followers. He’d talk about ethics and making the world a better place while screwing underage girls, blackmailing people and branding women with his initials and boasting about having people killed. And his followers never noticed the problem with this.

          • It was just a lawyer joke, an attempt to provide levity.

            I’m not in competition with you to provide legal analysis on the Frank Report. I could not hope to do a better jib than you.

            I just feel that both you and Frank are negatively biased against Raniere, and positively biased in favor of the judge in this case. And so I am making points here that are not part of the regular mix, but which I sincerely believe are important – however untrained they are.

            Some people don’t like that. Some people want their comment section to be like a supper club where everyone agrees. And if someone says something that is outside the bounds of the group agreement, their whole dinner is ruined.

            I’m not like that. I love lots of different viewpoints, lots of lively and friendly debate.

            So I try to make jokes when things get just a little too serious.

            That was my point.


        • Mamma Mia, papa Pia,
          It hurts me when I pee-ah!
          Alonzo’s mom,
          gave me,

          Alonzo go troll somewhere else virgin boy!

        • Alonzo doesn’t mean it as a joke. It’s an insult coming from him. He is a passive aggressive twat, who believes he is everyone’s intellectual superior.

          At any one time, Alonzo is trolling almost 100 people. Alonzo even trolls Sultan of Six.

          • And after mulling it over and reading my own post, I seriously need to get a life.

  • Clyne in the dossier project video: “people we love are in jail because of a fabricated narrative”.

    They deny any wrongdoing by Keith et al.

    These women are in a mind-loop that they apparently can’t break free of.

    If Clyne says it is her choice and responsibility to live as she pleases, I get that. I agree. But not to the extent that it hurts others. And that it clearly did. That is where free choice stops and the government intervenes.

    That these women still support a man who without a shadow of a doubt groomed and abused multiple underage girls is beyond me. Forget DOS, forget all the other indictments, but they should be able to see that’s wrong and should denounce him for this alone.

    • The latest dossier project video is more ineffective and hypocritical propaganda.

      These women attack “Jaye” and question the integrity of her actions leaving the abusive master/slave criminal enterprise.

      With no sense of irony whatsoever, the DOS die-hards criticize Jaye for taking collateral off of Allison’s computer and forwarding it to her boyfriend for safekeeping.

      This is something Jaye explained in her sworn testimony during Keith Raniere’s trial. It was Jaye’s desperate attempt to protect herself from retaliatory harm upon fleeing DOS.

      What is laugh-out-loud funny is the outrage from Nicki Clyne who routinely sent the collateral of the other DOS slaves to HER boyfriend, Keith Raniere. But for jacking off purposes. Not for safekeeping.

      Nicki conspired with other slave masters to hide Keith’s role as the ultimate leader and architect of the DOS slave pyramid.

      And the unknowing women who trusted Nicki and others that no man was involved when they agreed to submit their collateral had no idea that it was all forwarded to Keith (He admitted seeing it in his jailhouse phone interview) and Keith even had to approve it as “damaging enough”.

      The bad acting as these cult members feign sadness, shock and self-righteous victimhood themselves over Jaye beating them at their own demented blackmail game is tragically hilarious and devoid of any self-awareness or connection to reality.

    • These videos have now become repetitive and utterly boring. Are these women seriously this stupid and/or think other people are this gullible? Or does long-term indoctrination in NXIVM just create liars? Why is their narrative more credible than those who claim they were deceived, victimized, and wronged? I could only watch the first five minutes of the same old. Judging from the viewership of these videos, it appears that hardly anyone cares about their rationalizations and many people don’t buy them.

      Nicki is clearly not telling the entire story and is, therefore, effectively lying by omission. She is definitely guilty of breaking the law because if she wasn’t, her lawyer would never have documented that she would plead the fifth (which prevents self-incrimination) if she were to be called to the witness stand.

      No one said the “only” purpose of DOS was to find sex partners for Keith which Michelle claims in the video. But you can be absolutely sure that it was a significant one. And not only that, just like its more tame predecessor, Jness, it was subtly intended for this purpose and coercively so as its redefinition of the term collateral which was really blackmail shows. Such intent is obvious to anyone who is familiar with the sexual beliefs, behavior, and history of Keith. Keith is a conniving and manipulative charlatan with bad intent who thought he was clever in attempting to cover his tracks with a secret sorority based on female “empowerment” and “growth” and failed miserably because not only was he called out for it, he was caught and proven beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law for his illegal activities.

      These gals keep going on about personal responsibility and being a victim as if they are mutually exclusive concepts. They absolutely are not. You can own your choices and still be considered a victim because a victim is someone who is wronged in some way. That someone made a choice in some manner that caused herself to be wronged does not put the responsibility for being wronged on herself.

      • What I find so frustrating is their insistence that other women take responsibility for their choices when they don’t take responsibility for theirs. You lied to women in order to trick them into being a slave for Keith, assigned women to seduce him, punished women who didn’t follow orders, refused to let women out of servitude when they got wind of what was going on, etc. But the victims are unethical. How does betraying your friends for Keith, lying to the whole community for Keith, covering up his crimes after the fact for Keith, and so on make you ethical? It is like in the bizarre world of NXIVM ethical just means what is good for Keith.

    • I watched the entire video and am coincidentally also in the middle of reading Nicole’s testimony. It’s a little disconcerting to hear the DOSsier women claim, in essence, that the women who testified are lying, that they were fine with DOS but changed their stories based on pressure from the media or fear of prosecution.

      There is a significant number of texts, emails, and journal entries admitted into evidence that support that women like Nicole were very emotionally distressed by their involvement with DOS at the time DOS was happening. (And the evidence shows it went well beyond merely being uncomfortable about sending Keith an email.)

      I don’t doubt that the DOSsier women found the experience to be positive, but just because some people weren’t traumatized doesn’t mean that no one was. I also find their furor about Jaye and the collateral curious. The fact remains that the one collateral release that occurred during this case was the leaking of Sarah Edmonson’s branding video to the Mexican media.

      Odd coincidence that the branding shown was Sarah and not, say, Jimena Garza. It’s almost as if someone leaked the video intentionally to try to impeach Sarah’s recollection of events. Just a guess here, but I’d bet that the leaker wasn’t Jaye, her boyfriend, or anyone on the side of the prosecution. So I would encourage folks to be careful about taking the moral high ground.

    • I think it’s great you guys allow the Dossier Project videos to be published here, so everyone can be exposed to all the ideas regarding NXIVM and Anti-NXIVM.

      Anti-Scientology has become as shut down and controlled as Scientology in recent years, and it’s good to see you guys guard against that.

      I think it’s good The Dossier Project are exposing some of the pressure the government placed on witnesses to change their stories in this case, with threats of felony charges, life imprisonment, etc.

      Talk about “undue influence.” Most people don’t get a chance to see how the government works, up close and personal, as these human beings did.


      • And by the way. I found these questions on the Internet regarding consent and the Dossier Project, and tweeted them to the Dossier Project yesterday. I’ve heard back from Suneel on some of them on Twitter. But no one from the Dossier Project yet.

        Maybe they’ll do a new video on them. I think these questions really do get to the heart of the matter with DOS:

        Would all the women of DOS would have said “Yes” if the higher-ups had disclosed the truth about the brand’s meaning?

        Can’t they see how they didn’t give true consent since there was deception involved?

        Can there be consent if: they didn’t know that Keith was the puppet Grandmaster and creator of DOS?

        Or that men were involved in DOS at all?

        Or that the entire 1st line of masters was sexually involved with Raniere?

        How could the lower level women of DOS have given true consent when they didn’t know all of this?

        • Alanzo,

          Solid questions. Could you please also ask about the multiple sources of documented pursuit of a “virgin successor” FOR Keith?

          Was this for breeding purposes? Why was it so important that the woman be a virgin but not Keith?

          There are further follow up questions about Rosa Laura’s daughter and more. Like, was the teenage daughter made aware her mother promised her physically to Keith? But this is just a start on the ” procure virgins for Keith” issue.

          Asking you to inquire because there is a line of communication that you’ve stated exists.

      • Is that going to be Nicki nose job’s defense for her civil trial?

        “Life is abusive” – I rest my case!

        But what a sad view of living. Depressing.

  • I agree: Raniere’s a scumbag. I also agree that scumbags like Raniere deserve due process.

    Raniere got due process. And a sentence proportional to his crimes.

    I also share your respect for Judge Garaufis. He has great intelligence and wisdom. He also knows the law. This case is not his first rodeo – he knows how to conduct a trial. So the case is hardly going to be overturned by the likes of Bonjean. Her brief is sloppily written, rambling, and clumsy. Her photo always makes me laugh: the crossed arms, sleeveless to show off her tattoos, the practiced steely stare. I bet she practiced for hours before the mirror, perfecting that risible bulldog attitude. Impresses the sucker clients- “I’ll fight for YOU!” Yeah, she’s that kind of lawyer…

    Today, June 7th, is the deadline for Mack’s crack team of legal eagles to submit her response to the Presentence Investigation Report. Oh, how I would love to know the contents of these documents!

  • Well said. Keith’s number is up. In the fog created by his supporters trying to make tiny points out of nothing, the wickedness at the heart of this must not be lost.

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.

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Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083