The Vow # 2 has made Moira Kim Penza better known to the public.
She is a partner at the law firm Wilkinson Stekloff.
Her bio states: ‘She is first and foremost a trial lawyer with a record of success leading and winning high-stakes civil and criminal cases.’
Her work as a prosecutor of Keith Raniere and other NXIVM defendants is her most famous achievement to date.
Her bio states: ‘Before joining the firm, Moira served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, where she led numerous criminal investigations and prosecutions involving both white collar and violent crime. Notably, Moira’s groundbreaking prosecution and trial conviction of Keith Raniere—the leader of a purported self-help group NXIVM—generated worldwide media attention and has been credited with paving the way for other sex trafficking prosecutions against powerful individuals.’
Her social media presence is interesting, and while she doesn’t have a large following on Twitter yet, her posts shed light on her personal view of NXIVM.
Very surreal that yesterday was 5 yrs to the day I first read about NXIVM in the New York Times
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) October 18, 2022
In the Tweet below, Penza is alluding to an article in the NYT’s Sunday magazine.
Vanessa Grigoriadis wrote the story before Raniere was arrested, but it was not published until after his arrest.
Speaking of narrative one thing that still bothers me is that @NYTmag published this which was arranged by a PR agent hired by Clare Bronfman and is filled w carefully constructed lies/NXIVM slant. Thankfully I indicted right before this came out. https://t.co/5W69yZSMcY
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) November 24, 2022
Moira is right that a publicist arranged the story – something Frank Report wrote in 2017 – before it was published. But the Grigoriadis story was not exactly a puff piece. I do not think the NXIVM followers of Raniere liked the slant.
In it, Allison Mack takes the fall for the branding.
NXIVM leaders trusted Grigoriadis. She is with Sara Bronfman leaving a 2017 Jness class.
Penza wrote more about the NYT Magazine story:
“It’s very interesting to reread now. Seeing how the women like Nancy continued to protect him and how Allison Mack was set up to take the fall on the branding. The restrictions the author agreed to are startling.”
Penza has some hard truths regarding Michele Hatchette.
On the stand Michele also could not have dodged the question of whether she was called the n-word as part of the DOS program as described by India Oxenberg in her victim impact statement, which I don’t think would have gone over very well for Keith Raniere in Brooklyn.
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) November 22, 2022
We see glimpses of her social life.
When I thought the night couldn’t get better, my favorite comedian and @TheVowHBO fan @WhitneyCummings got @sarahjedmondson on the phone for an impromptu reunion after the show! pic.twitter.com/B19IOq6LvF
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) October 10, 2021
She writes about why Camila did not testify at the trial of Raniere.
Penza: Thanks to the support of her sister Camila was healing and not “loyal” to Keith Raniere at the time of the trial. She was advised not to cooperate. Her voice was heard at sentencing and Daniela gave her a voice at trial.
Penza: Camila was considered a victim by the gov’t and would never have harmed anyone but for Keith. FBI traveled to MX to speak with her before trial but her Bronfman-paid-for atty said no. I believe K’s team had had access to her and IMO they knew she would be a devastating witness.
Raniere tried to destroy them, but Daniela's story is a testament to the power of the human mind and the will to survive. She was a threat to him bc she is a genius (no exaggeration) and he was a fraud. Her testimony was justice served on a cold platter. https://t.co/2UBk5YlUXh
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) November 14, 2022
Hubby: “Are those NXIVM transcripts?”
Me: “I want to make sure what I’m tweeting came out in court.”
(Why I’ll never go viral) pic.twitter.com/A6ZGR8C4hL
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) November 8, 2022
Penza: In answer to a frequently asked Q, I don’t know where “NXIVM” name came from, but I have heard it may be related to “nexum,” a Roman debt bondage contract where a debtor pledged his person as collateral if he defaulted on his loan. I do not know if true, but it fits.
Frank Report first reported this in 2018.
Nice collection of undeniable facts that destroy DOS holdovers’ narrative.
Women who gave collateral to join DOS were not told Raniere was head, that the brand was his initials, or that sex played any part. 1st line (incl Allison, Nicki, Lauren) were sleeping with Raniere and hid these facts when they recruited into their “women’s empowerment group.”
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) October 25, 2022
My hat is off for Moira Penza in this one: NXIVM was never nice and good for its ‘students’.
At trial we couldn’t introduce evidence of Raniere’s abuse of other underage girls but @timesunion was reporting on it in 2012. This is important context for The Vow. It wasn’t as if NXIVM went bad. Raniere was already a con man and predator. https://t.co/21vET8fT0p
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) October 18, 2022
She pushes back at Nancy Salzman’s attempt to distance herself from the crimes she was enabling and celebrating.
Nancy Salzman knew Daniela was in the room, and one of the first pieces of evidence at trial was Nancy parroting Raniere’s teachings about whether sexual abuse should depend on if a child is “adultlike” to underage Mexican girls. https://t.co/4isGC3cAYB
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) October 17, 2022
She also is keeping track of other sex trafficking trials, such as R Kelly.
30 minutes is a lot. I don’t know what’s on there but I prob would have entered entirety into evidence, shown shorter clips just to show faces and fact of sex acts, and then had jury instructed that they would have access to all during deliberations if needed. https://t.co/3jYCdzncvb
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) August 19, 2022
She also puts the finger in the wound: Ghislaine Maxwell was not an innocent by-stander. She was a sex trafficker as Epstein.
The government has not shied from stating the horrific graphic details of how Maxwell groomed these girls. This wasn’t a trial of Epstein-by-proxy. This level of harm over so many years only happens because of enablers and this sentence will be all hers. https://t.co/9lng1oap2O
— Moira Penza (@moira_penza) June 28, 2022
All in all, Moira Kim Penza balances a clearly liberal world view with what seems to be a real intention of supporting the fight against sex trafficking in American society.
Penza: Marking someone (usually with a tattoo but sometimes branding) is often used by traffickers to signify ownership. Removal of such symbols is one of the more common victim services provided in traditional sex trafficking cases.
If you are interested in Penza’s posts, visit her Twitter page.