This is part 6 of my report on the unredacted sentencing memo of Lauren Salzman. My comments I publish [in brackets and bold]. Any redacted material will be in RED.
Here are the first parts in this series:
In part 1, I explain that I have the unredacted version of Lauren’s sentencing memo.
Lauren’s Post-Trial Efforts to Commence a New Chapter in Her Life.
After her trial testimony, Lauren experienced significant emotional difficulties and experienced a “devastating recapitulation of the prior two decades of her life.” Ben Myers Ltr. (Ex. 8).
[While the fact of Ben Myers writing a letter on his sister-in -law Lauren’s behalf was redacted, it is obvious from the contents of the letter which is not redacted that he is the letter writer. He is a well known NXIVM player – active in NXIVM and their plans until the arrest of Lauren and her mother Nancy.
“It is also no secret that Meyers was the man that Daniela was fond of back in 2010 and apparently kissed, which, she says, caused Keith Raniere to demand that she heal her ethical breach by going into a room and not leaving until she healed it. That ethical breach, Daniela told me – and testified at the trial of Raniere – was that she had feelings for Ben and while Raniere was polygamous – he demanded from all of his women that they be monogamous to him. At that time Ben was single and not dating Michelle. Curiously, as Lauren was appointed to monitor Daniela, who remained in her unlocked room for almost two years, Ben moved on with his life and of all people he later married Lauren’s sister Michelle. Had it not been for Raniere demanding Daniela go into her room and heal her breach, and for Lauren being in effect the monitor of Daniela, Ben might have married Daniela and not her sister. Such is fate.]
Lauren’s trial testimony was undoubtedly the first and most important step in her rehabilitation process. Since this time, however, Lauren has made significant efforts to meaningfully continue to regain her identity by engaging in regular counseling with [I am redacting the name of the counselor] embarking on a new career path, and spending time with family and friends and caring for her ailing family members.
[While some might wonder why I am revealing that Lauren is getting mental health counseling – a fact that her attorneys do not want the public to know – I think it is most relevant since many of the DOS victims of Raniere got a large percentage of their restitution money based on the fact that they are getting therapy and that information was made public. Even the amounts of money their therapist expect they will spend on therapy over the coming years was published. It is or should not be a secret and it is in the public interest to know that Lauren is getting mental health therapy. She has been alleged as a woman who helped foster an environment where women needed therapy. She has claimed to be both a victim and a criminal in her plea bargain and on the witness stand testifying against Keith Raniere. This is fair to know at least some details.]
Lauren Has Attended Counseling to Address her Misconduct and Recovery.
After her testimony at Raniere’s trial, Lauren was in an extremely dark place in her life. While her testimony served as a pseudo-release of years of pain, she was now faced with the reality that most of her entire adult life had been based upon the principles of a Charlatan.
[The next paragraphs I am redacting since it gives details of her treatment for her] anxiety and trauma…. she needed to address and confront how an intelligent woman such as herself could have disregarded the red flags for many years.
[The next paragraphs relate specifically on details of treatment and I think it fair to only mention this – she is not taking psychiatric medication. There are quotes from her therapist, who has written a letter in support of Lauren and her progress. It is fair to mention this much – that she, like many of the other women, are claiming the same mental health injuries. If it is true that she caused other women to have these, it is also true that she is claiming she has them also and blaming the same cause — Keith Raniere.]
She entered into treatment with post-traumatic stress, and [redacted] was experiencing “depression, anxiety, flashbacks and dissociative moments that significantly disrupted her daily activities.”
[The next paragraphs deal with what Lauren told her therapist – much of which supports what she has already told the world – in testimony which is that she was] ashamed and remorseful [over] her unwitting involvement in what she believed to be an ‘honorable’ self-improvement organization for over 20 years since her university graduation.”
[This is an important point – since she told her therapist what she essentially was asked to tell the jury during her cross examination at the trial of Raniere, The judge halted the cross examination when she broke down in tears, He said she was a ‘broken’ woman. Lauren claimed that it was “unwitting” – a hugely significant use of a word – – that she did not intend to harm others but thought she was doing good by serving Raniere. Now she realized that she was wrong, she said.]
[More paragraphs are devoted to her relationship with Raniere as told by Lauren to her therapist and includes more of her therapists analysis of her condition and he future. This I have chosen to redact except for one thing. Since the other victims of Raniere had their need for future therapy – and the cost of it – on the public record, as attested to by their therapist, I think it is only fair to relate that her therapist believes she is going to need therapy for years] she is likely to suffer with these posttraumatic symptoms for years.
It will certainly take a great deal of time in order for Lauren to fully heal from her twenty (20) years of involvement with Raniere. Fortunately for Lauren, [therapist name redacted] is committed to continuing to assist her through this healing process.
[The purpose of the lengthy explanation by Lauren’s attorneys about Lauren’s therapy – most of which I redacted – is to help the judge no doubt become informed that Lauren is following the tried and true method of recovery for victims. Therapy to help her come to terms with her misconduct – which she claims was caused by one foul man who led her astray. There is very little in the section about her therapy that addresses her misconduct and a lot about how she was horrified to have such a man as Raniere lead her astray and ruin her life – and help her enter a world where she thought she was doing good and it was really all fasle.
In a word she was an utterly deceived woman, who is now broken and is trying to heal and recover. It is also clear that she believes that a man is fully responsible for the bad she did.
Still is it fair to blame it all on Raniere – and her gullibility? –
– that is the question. The point of this in her sentencing memorandum is to make it clear that Lauren has suffered plenty and is getting the necessary help – that she wants to confront her mistakes and start anew.
How true this is, how sincere, how significant it will be is hard to say. Sentences are based on a number of factors including remorse, deterrence and public safety. Therapy speaks to public safety and remorse.
The judge’s biggest issue perhaps is deterrence. If he does not give her prison time, will it satisfy the deterrence requirement that a woman was involved in a group that the judge has openly declared to be led by one of the foulest of men – a man who does not deserve any respect.
Many of my readers are chastising me for seeking leniency for Lauren. And I am glad for their comments for I may be wrong.]