That big boom you heard last night wasn’t a clap of thunder.
Nor was it fireworks – or a jet breaking the sound barrier.
That big boom was the sound of the “Sentencing Memorandum” that federal prosecutors filed last night hitting the PACER system.
The one in which they recommend that U.S. District Court Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis impose a prison sentence “at the high end” of the 41-51 months that the applicable U.S. Sentencing Guidelines call for (At the time she pleaded guilty, the original estimate of the applicable guidelines was 33-to-41 months).
If the judge follows that recommendation, that means Nancy will be headed off to federal prison for at least 51 months
And if he considers everything that Nancy’s victims have said – and will say – about her, a sentence of at least 6-8 years is entirely possible (If he gives Nancy the same “triple the max” that he imposed on Clare Bronfman, that number could go as high as 15 years).
What Nancy Did to Earn Her Sentence
As detailed in the “Sentencing Memorandum”, Nancy pleaded guilty to one count of Racketeering – and two underlying predicate acts – back on March 13, 2019 (That wasn’t quite the “ides of March” that Caesar was warned about – but it was close enough for the woman who insisted she be referred to as her made-up title of “Prefect”).
The two underlying predicate acts were Conspiracy to Commit Identity Theft – and Conspiracy to Alter Records in an Official Proceeding.
Identity Theft & Unlawful Surveillance
According to the government’s filing, “Nancy Salzman, along with co-defendants Keith Raniere and Clare Bronfman, participated in the unlawful surveillance and investigation of perceived critics and enemies of Raniere and Nxivm”.
The targets of these surveillance and investigation tactics included the following:
- High-ranking politicians (e.g., U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer);
- Reporters who had published articles critical of Raniere or Nxivm (e.g., James Odato);
- Some of Nxivm’s own lawyers;
- Legal adversaries and their families (e.g., Rick Ross and the Suttons);
- An accountant (James Loperfido) who worked for an attorney who had previously done work for Nxivm (Joe O’Hara); and
- Edgar Bronfman, Sr., the father of Clare and Sara Bronfman.
Nancy’s role in all this skullduggery was to hire the private firms that did the actual surveillance and investigatory work. Firms like Interfor, Inc. and Canaprobe.
When the FBI executed a search warrant on Nancy’s house on March 27, 2018 – a day after Keith Raniere had been arrested after he was unceremoniously kicked out of Mexico – they found a large box containing the purported banking information of Edgar Bronfman, Joe O’Hara, Rick Ross, the author of the less-than-flattering article about Keith that was published in Forbes magazine in October 2003, and several prominent New York State politicians and lobbyists.
Those same FBI agents also found more than $520,000 in cash – which, interestingly enough, was not even mentioned in the “Sentencing Memorandum”. We’ll have more to say about this factor in a future post.
Obstruction of Justice
The “Sentencing Memorandum” also charges Nancy with conspiring to obstruct justice “by altering videotapes that were to be produced in a federal lawsuit in New Jersey (That was the lawsuit that Nxivm had brought against Rick Ross and several members of the Sutton family after Ross published some of Nxivm’s super-secret “tech” on his website).
During the course of the lawsuit, one of the defendants – Stephanie Franco – filed counterclaims alleging that Nancy had misrepresented the nature and effectiveness of Nxivm’s training programs by claiming, among other things, that they could cure poor eyesight.
In conjunction with the counterclaims, Franco’s attorneys requested that Nxivm provides copies of certain videotapes that supposedly contained several instances of making such claims.
Instead of just turning over the tapes, Nancy approved a plan whereby Mark Vicente altered the videotapes to remove the delusional claims – and then doctored the cases to make it appear they were originals. The altered tapes were then provided to Franco’s attorneys with an assurance that they were in unedited condition.
The Feds Paint a Very Unflattering but Very Accurate Portrait of Nancy
Federal prosecutors spent several pages in the “sentencing memorandum” describing Nancy’s misdeeds and her character. And even though portions of that section were redacted, it’s clear they don’t think she’s a very nice person – and certainly not one who is entitled to any mercy.
Here are some of the things they said about Prefect:
- She was “a loyal and integral member of the criminal enterprise led by her co-defendant, Keith Raniere”;
- She “was the President of Nxivm…and, in that role, (she) exalted Raniere’s teachings and ideology and demanded absolute commitment and deference to (him)”;
- She “instructed Nxivm members that anyone who challenged Raniere or Nxivm, including family members and friends, were ‘suppressives’ and must be avoided”;
- She “told Nxivm members that they had committed ‘ethical breaches’ which they needed to remedy, often in ways that benefitted (her) or Raniere”;
- “Many of the NXIVM teachings (she) promulgated…disparaged or humiliated women and blamed victims of abuse”;
- “Some of (her) teachings also questioned the appropriate age of consent and suggested that children as young as 12 years old were capable of consenting to sex”;
- (She) also encouraged Nxivm members to take expensive Nxivm courses, and incur debt in order to do so”;
- She developed a purportedly therapeutic technique called ‘Explorations of Meaning’ (EM) which was sometimes used as a means of manipulation and control”;
- (She) encouraged Nxivm members to take expensive Ems to address their purported ‘issues,’ generating a significant amount of money”;
- (Her) actions enabled Raniere to maintain his position as the leader of a criminal enterprise and gain access to his victims”;
- “For years, (she) attempted to investigate and intimidate perceived critics and enemies of Raniere. The targets of these efforts included reporters; vocal critics of Nxivm or Raniere, including Rick Ross and Raniere’s ex-girlfriends; former Nxivm members; former Nxivm attorneys; and even federal judges overseeing litigation involving Raniere and Nxivm”.
There’s more – but you get the picture. And trust me, the mere mention that Nancy was involved in attempts to investigate and intimidate federal judges pretty much guarantees that Judge Garaufis is not going to show her any leniency (He may even remand her on the spot as he did with Clare Bronfman!).
And for those of you who like the gory details, just wait until some of the “Victim Impact Statements” – which were apparently filed “under seal” by the feds – are made available to the public (Several victims have indicated that they will provide Frank Report with copies of the statements). Here’s what federal prosecutors had to say about those statements:
“Victim impact statements, which have been submitted to the Court under separate cover, detail the destructive impact of Nancy Salzman’s crimes. These statements reflect that victims suffered, both personally and financially, as a result of the defendant’s actions. Victims describe being manipulated by the defendant, isolated from their family members, saddled with debt as a result of Nxivm and ESP courses, and psychologically abused”.
Bye, bye, Nancy, you evil bitch!