NXIVM Docs: the Complete Dateline NBC Transcript – Part 3

This is the third and final part of the transcription of ‘Collateral Damage’. an episode of Dateline, NBC, aired on Mar 2 2021.

This is the first installment of a new category in the Frank Report: “NXIVM Docs” – that will register documents and media reports for researchers, historians and interested people, so that they have these resources at hand.

NXIVM Docs: Collateral Damage: Complete NBC Dateline Transcript – Part 1

NXIVM Docs: the Complete Dateline NBC Transcript – Part 2

PART 3

KATE SNOW (voice over): India Oxenberg was still loyal to NXIVM and Keith Raniere. Afraid for India’s safety, Catherine went looking for her near Albany, in late November 2017.

KATE SNOW: That’s a courageous thing to do, to go drive to where you think your daughter is being effectively held and not knowing if they have security, if they’re I mean, did you think she was in danger? Did you worry that… did you worry for her life?

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: I did at that point, I did worry for her life. I knew also that they would be blaming her for all of this public outrage because it was her mom. Yeah. So I thought that if anything, it would increase her jeopardy.

Keith Raniere walking with DOS slave Dani Padilla.

KATE SNOW (voice over): As Katherine looked around the neighborhood, she was anxious.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: And who do we bump into? Keith Raniere and two of his hard members.

KATE SNOW: What happened?

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: Well, not much, because he ran

KATE SNOW: He ran from you?

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: Yes, he ran and hid in his house.

Keith Raniere in Mexico.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Catherine didn’t find India, who had left Albany for New York City. Soon after that, Catherine learned Raniere had left Albany too – he took off for Mexico while American authorities were looking into the allegations against him. His followers, Nicki and Allison, were with him. By this point, Alison and Nicki were more than close friends. They had become a couple and gotten married.

KATE SNOW: You described earlier that you were in a sexual relationship with Keith. You’re married to Alison. Is that a loving sexual relationship also?

NICKI CLYNE: I think yeah. That isn’t something I want to discuss here. There’s just no way that I could do justice to the beautiful soul that she is in a in a short answer.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Nicki, Allison, Raniere and others hung out in Puerto Vallarta. Then in March 2013, a knock at the door.

(Sounds of distant, faint voices speaking in Spanish.)

Keith Raniere after his ‘arrest’ in Mexico,

KATE SNOW (voice over): At first, Raniere hid in a closet. Nicki captured the scene as he was arrested and taken away by Mexican authorities.

Nicki (on tape): We can, we’re going to follow them.

KATE SNOW: Were you standing right there?

NICKI CLYNE: Yes. And some of them had like balaclavas and they had machine guns and bullet proof vests. And we didn’t know what was happening.

KATE SNOW (voice over): What happened was Raniere was immediately deported back to the U.S., where he was charged with crimes related to NXIVM.

KATE SNOW: Did you get a phone call?

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: I did. I was I was getting a facial. My lawyers called me up. My phone went ballistic and said he’s just been arrested. It was a waste of a facial. I had tears pouring down my face creams all over the place. Yeah, best phone calls of my life that felt like an end, or felt like the beginning of the end.

Nxivm prosecutors Tanya Hajjar, Mark Lesko and Moira Kim Penza,

KATE SNOW (voice over): Keith Raniere was charged by federal prosecutors with a litany of felonies, including racketeering conspiracy, sex trafficking conspiracy and sex trafficking.

KATE SNOW: When Keith Raniere was arrested, did you worry that you might be in legal trouble, too?

INDIA OXENBERG: I was definitely worried when Keith Raniere got arrested. I think I was also in a great deal of shock, because it was starting to hit me that this was not going to just go away, that this was gaining speed.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Catherine warned India she faced legal risk.

KATE SNOW: She could technically be arrested. You don’t know that they’re not going to go after her because technically she has women reporting up to her as slaves.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: I know. I know. That was my fear. That’s why I kept texting her saying you’re in a very dangerous situation.

Allison Mack walks out of court after she was charged with sex trafficking and forced labor conspiracy.

KATE SNOW (voice over):Then, two weeks later, Alison Mack was arrested.

INDIA OXENBERG: And it really wasn’t until Alison Mack was arrested that I started to fear that I could be, too. And that’s a very scary place to be.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Would India be next?

LESTER HOLT: Coming up, India reveals her darkest moment.

KATE SNOW: It’s heavy.

INDIA OXENBERG: It is. That was a really vulnerable thing for me to share.

KATE SNOW (voice over): India was in a very lonely place, by herself and at risk. She was still in NXIVM clutches – it would take months to find her way out.

KATE SNOW: It was a process for her to remove herself or to recognize the danger she was in and what was happening. Right. Didn’t just happen overnight.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: No.

KATE SNOW: There’s not a light bulb moment when she said, I’m leaving.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: For other people who have left cults, they have a clear, concise, precise moment of shifting. But with India, it was incremental.

Clare Bronfman heads to court enjoying the attention of the media.

KATE SNOW (voice over): After Keith Raniere and Alison Mack were charged in July 2018, Seagram’s heiress Clare Bronfman was arrested along with other NXIVM insiders. India finally acquiesced to having her first session with a cult expert who had been working with Catherine. The goal to finally bring her home and deprogram her.

INDIA OXENBERG: We were in a hotel room together speaking with a woman who was the deprogrammer that my mom introduced me to who really was my entry point into rebuilding my capacity to think critically again, because it had been so tampered with.

KATE SNOW (voice over): The effort took months, but slowly India took halting steps to leave NXIVM behind. But India’s friend Danielle, the doctor, was still loyal to Raniere.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: It would have been a lot easier, you know, for me to just say, you know, ‘I made a mistake. Let me go through the deprogramming’. So many people that were in NXIVM did kind of break ties. They didn’t have strong relationships anymore with their families.

KATE SNOW: So did you had that happen? You repaired it or you…

DANIELLE ROBERTS: Yeah, I mean, my family never left me, you know, they never disowned me, which I know – there are some friends of mine out there, their families have done that and they’ve stayed true – not because it’s easier, because it’s not. It’s a lot harder.

Nicki Clyne.

KATE SNOW (voice over): It was hard for Nicky Klein too. she was losing her close circle of friends after spending ten years of her life in NXIVM.

KATE SNOW: It’s a whole decade of your life.

NICKI CLYNE: Yeah. Yeah.

KATE SNOW: How do you look at it now, those 10 years?

NICKI CLYNE: I’m just so grateful that I that I had the opportunity to experience the people, the tools, the community that I did because it’s not here anymore, at least not in the same way.

KATE SNOW (voice over): By fall, 2018, India had finally left the DOS group and NXIVM, and moved back to California, but the process was excruciating.

KATE SNOW: How did you repare your relationship with your mom?

INDIA OXENBERG: A lot of work. A lot of time. We knew that our love was strong and that we had to just keep the communication open, keep sharing, keep talking. Even when it was really uncomfortable – and my mom did that for me, she was there from the moment that I got out with open arms. She said, I am here with you for whatever you need, I’ll give it to you.

Catherine & India Oxenberg

KATE SNOW: I wonder if now India now can you see that your mom was driven by nothing but love.

INDIA OXENBERG: Now I can. Everything that she did came from love. Everything she did came from the fact that she knew that I had a life beyond this, that I couldn’t see for myself.

KATE SNOW: India, I just can’t imagine what you went through emotionally. You said, ‘I have wanted to end my life on numerous nights since leaving’.

INDIA OXENBERG: Yeah.

KATE SNOW: It’s heavy.

INDIA OXENBERG: It is. That was a really vulnerable thing for me to share, and the more I’ve been able to speak about my experiences, the more I see the similarities with many other women and men who have experienced trauma or abuse.

KATE SNOW (voice over): NXIVM leaders were now accused of orchestrating that kind of trauma and abuse. But just as they were to have their day in court, there were new revelations.

LESTER HOLT: Coming up: one revelation, the person who did most of the branding of DOS women was none other than Dr. Danielle Roberts. Now she speaks out about it publicly for the first time.

KATE SNOW: You are a doctor. How could you then inflict pain on people?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: I think people are making an assumption that people were harmed. Nobody was harmed in this. These women wanted this. They asked for this.

LESTER HOLT: When Dateline continues.

Danielle Roberts.

KATE SNOW (voice over): As the leadership of NXIVM was charged with multiple federal crimes, another investigation was underway in the spring of 2018. Not criminal, but a medical investigation into the person who branded India and most of the other DOS  women, someone you’ll recognize: Danielle Roberts.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: My intent was never to hurt any of these women.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Remember, she was an osteopathic doctor and now her medical license was at stake. Danielle is now answering questions about branding DOS members in an exclusive interview. She says she was asked to do the branding by her so-called master in DOS, Allison Mack.

KATE SNOW: They say the women were naked and that they were restrained by other women. Is that true?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: I branded 17 women total. All of the women that I branded were naked. That was part of the process. It wasn’t a bad process.

KATE SNOW: Some people are outraged that you did this as a doctor, frankly.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: Sure.

KATE SNOW: That you used a cauterizing pen and put a brand in people because you took a Hippocratic Oath to protect, to help people, to keep them from pain and you were inflicting pain. What do you say to that?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: I mean, I think it’s a very misunderstood thing and it’s going to take a little bit of pulling apart. The first thing is that this you know, this clearly wasn’t the practice of medicine.

Danielle Roberts practices yoga.

KATE SNOW (voice over):  Danielle says she was not acting as a doctor during the brandings, that she was a member of a social group taking part in a social activity.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: And these women didn’t come to me because they thought I was a doctor. They had no idea who the branding technician was going to be. You know, there was no patient physician relationship.

KATE SNOW: But my but my question, just as a. As a human being, hearing the story, my question is, you are a doctor.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: I am.

KATE SNOW: I understand you’re saying you weren’t practicing medicine in that moment. But you are a doctor, you’re trained doctor, you took an oath. How could you then, you know, inflict pain on people?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: Well, I think pain and harm are two different things. You know, I think people are making an assumption that people were harmed. Nobody was harmed in this. These women wanted this. They asked for this. I mean, I understand. I understand, now, that the narrative has changed.

KATE SNOW: Because there are women who have said, ‘I didn’t want this. I felt like I had to do it.’ There are women who have said – India said Oxenberg said to me, ‘I didn’t really want this’. She’s now covered it up with another tattoo. She’s ashamed that she has the brand.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: And I feel badly that that’s how they’ve chosen to perceive it. I feel badly about that. Understand that – when they were in the room with me. They wanted it. They said they wanted it. They were laughing,

KATE SNOW (voice over): Danielle says she is convinced the women really made a free choice to get the brand.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: All their body language, all of their words, all of their mannerisms. Were they nervous? Sure. Were they excited? Absolutely, you know. But they wanted it.

KATE SNOW: They would say they wanted it because they were brainwashed. That’s what they would say. They only wanted it in that moment because they had been led down that path, and their minds were not their own.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: Well, I mean. This leads to a very key issue. I mean, like, when do we say you you’re responsible for your decisions and when are you not? You know, I believe that we’re responsible for all of our decisions, no matter what the consequences of those are.

KATE SNOW (voice over): That was the case Danielle made to the New York State Office of Professional Medical Conduct. After the investigation, the OPM determined that Danielle would not lose her medical license.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: This clearly wasn’t the practice of medicine.

Dr. Danielle Roberts did the branding on most of the DOS slaves.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Danielle was able to continue with her medical practice and even gave seminars. But in 2019, as the NXIVM trial was about to get started, the medical board began another investigation – and the case is ongoing. Danielle says that happened because of all the bad publicity about NXIVM.

KATE SNOW: Whether it was influenced by the public discussion or not, this is happening. Why should your license not be revoked?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: If I had done something morally unfit, that’s for a different venue, that would have to be adjudicated in a different criminal court or some other.

KATE SNOW: And to be clear, you don’t think you did?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: No, I did not.

KATE SNOW: If they take your medical license away, what does that mean to you? Does that mean for your life?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: I mean, I’ve spent most of my life working to get that license, you know, it would be devastating not to do the thing that I have dedicated my life to do, you know, to help people and to – I mean, to share with people, honestly, everything that I’ve learned over all of these years and all of this study would be tragic, not just for me, but for many people that I could help.

KATE SNOW (voice over): As Danielle attempted to salvage her career, Keith Raniere attempted to save himself from a lifetime in prison.

LESTER HOLT: Coming up: at trial, a stomach turning bombshell.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: She’s an underage girl. I mean, that’s the level of depravity that Keith aspired to.

KATE SNOW: And then, a stunning verdict.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: I couldn’t stop sobbing. It was like this river of tears.

India Oxenberg;

KATE SNOW (voice over): At home in Malibu, there were some long nights. As India tried to recover from her time with next year, her mother still worried she’d be prosecuted.

KATE SNOW: India did have slaves to. Was that uncomfortable and that’s your daughter. I know you see as a victim in all this, but she did also victimize others.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: Yes. And she has to come to terms with that. There is a clear line for the prosecution of who they consider a victim and who they consider the perpetrator. And many victims became perpetrators, and that’s why it was such a slippery slope. But in their view, India is a victim – and that’s why she was not prosecuted.

KATE SNOW (voice over): India was never charged with any wrongdoing, nor was Danielle, but five members of NXIVM’s high command had already pleaded guilty. Among them, Clare Bronfman, who bankrolled the group. She pleaded guilty to harboring an illegal immigrant and the fraudulent use of a deceased person’s identity. Alison Mack pleaded guilty to racketeering and racketeering conspiracy charges. Left to stand trial alone. Keith Raniere was not going down without a fight. His attorney, Mark Agnifilo:

MARC AGNIFILO: This is basically a case as odd as it sounds about how grown adults are intimate with each other. I think we’re a very puritanical country. That’s why I wrote in court papers that the government was the morality police. I think this is a case that’s based on very limited roles of what’s appropriate sexually. And Keith has never been married. He has multiple sexual partners. That seems scary to us.

Marc Agnifilo

KATE SNOW (voice over):  Among his arguments, that the brandings were consensual.

MARC AGNIFILO: And it’s the government and the media that are coming down on the women of Das and they’re taking the traditional side of the trial. ‘Oh, the poor little dears. This was done against their will.’ You know, women have a secret society. Women brand themselves and they’re ‘poor little dears and they’re victims’. When men do it, they’re Marines.

KATE SNOW (voice over): In May 2019, Keith Raniere went on trial at the US courthouse in Brooklyn, charged with felonies including racketeering, sex trafficking and forced labor.

PROSECUTOR: Good afternoon.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Prosecutors argued that the women in DOS were essentially brainwashed and blackmailed and what happened to them wasn’t consensual. And because Raniere liked to record almost everything, prosecutors were able to use his own words against him by playing a conversation he had with Allison Mack.

ALLISON MACK (on tape): Keith and Alison, January 9th, 6:59 am, and talking about branding the women.

The handsome Vanguard on a rare walk alone in Clifton Park.

KATE SNOW (voice over):  Prosecutors said the tape proved that the so-called women’s empowerment group DOS was actually run by Raniere. In it, he discussed the branding.

KEITH RANIERE (on tape): Do you think the person who’s been branded should be completely nude and sort of held to the table like a sort of almost like a sacrifice? It also, of course, videoing it from different angles or whatever it gives collateral.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Raniere also said the women should be ordered to ask for the branding, to make it seem like they weren’t forced.

KEITH RANIERE (on tape): Should they say ‘please brand me, it would be an honor’ or something like that. And they should probably say that before they’re held down. So it doesn’t seem like they’re being coerced.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Prosecutors cast Raniere as a predator who abused scores of women. Raniere was also accused of sexual exploitation of a child and possession of child pornography. And there was disturbing testimony about Raniere abusing underage girls. Catherine was in the court at times and walked out, horrified.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: There was testimony in the trial that a woman named Rosa, who’s a mother in Mexico, she wrote an email and they shared the email in court. She says, I am one hundred percent clear that you are what I want for my daughter. Writing to Keith Raniere. This is a mom ready to give up her own daughter to the leader.

KATE SNOW: You talk about a mother’s love all the time and why you’ve done everything you’ve done for your daughter.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: This was maybe some of the most disturbing evidence that I saw. First of all, this woman’s daughter is a teenager. She’s an underage girl. And she was offering her up as a like a virginal sacrifice, is disgusting.

Lauren Salzman flipped on Raniere.

KATE SNOW (voice over): That teenage girl never was sent to Raniere. But investigators also testified about another young woman, who was allegedly molested by Raniere as a teenager. Then over several years, she was molded into being what DOS called a slave master. Robert Gavin of the Albany Times Union:

ROBERT GAVIN : A young girl, we now know, that Keith Raniere was having sex with since she was 15. And as the prosecutor said in her opening statement, this is someone who it’s the full circle – someone who he abused when she was 15, and now she’s being ordered to be the abuser.

KATE SNOW (voice over):  A high ranking NXIVM insider named Lauren Salzman flipped and backed up much of the prosecution’s case.

ROBERT GAVIN : She was a codefendant. I mean, this is someone before the trial was sitting at the defense table with Keith Raniere. And she not only testified against him, but she absolutely stuck it right in the jugular, I think.

KATE SNOW (voice over): India was not in court because she was on stand-by as a witness, though she was never called. The trial lasted eight weeks, but when the jurors got the case, it didn’t take them long. After just four and a half hours of deliberation, they reached a verdict: guilty on all counts. Catherine was overjoyed.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: And like all of this pent-up emotion that I’d probably be carrying the weight of this for two years, it was overwhelming.

KATE SNOW (voice over): And in October, 2020, Keith Raniere was sentenced to 120 years. India was one of scores of women – and men – who filed victim impact statements.

KATE SNOW: You said in your victim impact statement that it was bad enough to be physically raped, which he did, but that ‘Keith is also the type of predator who targets and degrades the entire fabric of his victims lives’. How should he be held accountable for what he did?

INDIA OXENBERG: Well, I think he is being held accountable for what he did. I think it’s a huge statement to say one hundred and twenty years in prison, he’s not getting out. And that, to me, is a testament to all the people who helped bring him down. I mean, that’s was our goal.

KATE SNOW (voice over): But even while he’s behind bars, essentially for life, India knows many people who are still his loyal followers.

LESTER HOLT: Coming up, how those loyal followers respond to accusations that they’ve been brainwashed.

NICKI CLYNE: I think anyone who knows me knows I’m a pretty smart person. I have my eyes wide open. I’m willing for everyone to think that I’m brainwashed, to stand up for what I believe in.

LESTER HOLT: When Dateline continues.

Dancing for Raniere in prison.

KATE SNOW (voice over): We saw them on the street at night, hoping they’d be seen. Recording videos of themselves just outside the New York Federal Prison where Keith Raniere was being held – dancing for their Vanguard. That’s former gymnast Daniel Roberts. At least 100 NXIVM loyalists still dedicate themselves to Keith Raniere. Nicki Clyne is one of them. She and other former DOS members started ‘The Dossier Project’, which aims to supposedly ‘set the record straight’ about the secret sorority.

KATE SNOW: People who study cults would probably say that you are so deep in it that you can’t see it for what it is – that you’ve been brainwashed. That’s what they would say.

NICKI CLYNE: Yeah, it’s a great way to cut someone off at the knees. I think anyone who knows me, knows I am a pretty smart person. I have my eyes wide open. I’m willing for everyone to think [that] I’m brainwashed to stand up for what I believe in. And, you know: it’s not been easy.

KATE SNOW (voice over):  It certainly hasn’t been once a highly paid actor, a cast member of Battlestar Galactica, she’s now broke looking for a job.

Nicki Clyne.

KATE SNOW: I didn’t realize the extent that your life has changed your career, your money, your livelihood.

NICKI CLYNE: I got a job at a cafe. I started working as a barista. It’s the first time I’ve ever had a job like that. And sometimes, people be like, ‘oh, my God, do people ever tell you look like that girl from Battlestar’?

KATE SNOW (voice over):  Dr. Daniel Roberts also says she’s broke, out of work and has sold everything she owns. But she continues to insist her experiences with NXIVM, DOS and Raniere were positive.

KATE SNOW: You know, there will be folks who see what you’re saying, hear what you’re saying, and think you are brainwashed. What do you say to them?

DANIELLE ROBERTS: I mean, they have to judge for themselves. I don’t believe that brainwashing is possible. You know, I very clearly made my own choices. You know, I chose my own thoughts, chose my own beliefs, chose my own decisions and behaviors.

KATE SNOW (voice over): India Oxenberg, who’s been out of NXIVM for two years now, has not spoken to her formally close friends, Nicki or Danielle, who branded her.

KATE SNOW: If you had a chance to talk with Daniel Roberts, what would you say?

Three DOS members, Allison Mack with two of her slaves, India Oxenberg and Danielle Roberts

INDIA OXENBERG: I’d probably just ask her questions because I don’t feel personally, because of what I’ve experienced. and what I know about what it takes to leave a cult or a group like this, forcing someone to see the truth is not respectful. And I know Danielle’s heart is a good heart and that if she had the opportunity to distance herself from this, maybe she would see it differently.

KATE SNOW (voice over): It’s difficult to comprehend how these women are still loyal to Keith Raniere. But cult awareness expert Rick Ross says it’s understandable, given what they and the others have been through.

RICK ROSS: This is at the end of a long process. It’s so easy to blame the victim.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Ross says the classic film ‘Gaslight’ illustrates what happened to the women of DOS.

RICK ROSS: And that’s where we get the expression gaslighting from.

Actor (on film) – You slowly and systematically being driven out of your mind.

Actress (on film) – Why? Why?

Why 'Gaslight' Hasn't Lost Its Glow - The New York Times
Ingrid Bergman and Joseph Cotton in ‘Gaslight’.

RICK ROSS: There’s a man who’s manipulating a woman and he’s constantly making her disbelieve her own intuition, her own gut feelings, undercutting her logic and making her feel like she’s crazy if she disagrees with him.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Nicki and Danielle and the others still loyal to Raniere reject that characterization.

DANIELLE ROBERTS: My life would be so much easier if I decided that, ‘you know what? I am just going to say this was bad. I was brainwashed. I didn’t realize this was a bad thing.’ You know, go to the medical board and tell the medical board I made a mistake, that I was duped. And I would be championed and heralded as, you know, as a woman who was strong enough to face the truth. But deep down inside, I would know that’s a lie.

KATE SNOW (voice over): In October 2020, the NXIVM ‘true believers’ rallied to Raniere’s defense.

DOSSIER PROJECT MEMBER (on tape): Law enforcement and prosecutors made knowingly false statements about…

KATE SNOW (voice over): They said he was denied due process and made claims of prosecutorial misconduct that even Raniere’s own attorney did not follow up on. Those efforts led to a phone call with his longtime nemesis. And for the first time since his arrest, Raniere would answer questions for Dateline.

Frank Parlato, nemesis of Keith Raniere.

LESTER HOLT: Coming up, does Raniere take responsibility for women being branded with his initials?

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): I didn’t come up with the branding. If you look at my long term partners, I’m even against tattooing.

LESTER HOLT: But then, an astonishing admission. The blame he does take.

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): But that, that haunts me forever.

KATE SNOW: It almost feels like Keith Raniere could have destroyed your life.

INDIA OXENBERG: Well, he destroyed a lot of people’s lives, I mean, where he destroyed a lot of people’s lives to the point where we’re still fixing the masses of the chaos that he created with impersonal relationships, even people who I was very close to. He’s done a lot of damage.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Keith Raniere never took the stand in his trial and never addressed his victims, but he wanted to tell his side of the story. So his supporters arranged a phone call.

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): Keith Raniere.

FRANK PARLATO:  Hey, Keith.

KATE SNOW (voice over): With – of all people – his longtime foe, Frank Parlato.

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): Both the devil and the saint should be able to get the exact same treatment under our justice system.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Raniere claimed prosecutors rigged the case against him. Frank agreed to hear him out.

FRANK PARLATO: I’m not saying he’s innocent. I think he’s guilty. However, there’s still a process that has to be followed.

KATE SNOW (voice over): Raniere told Frank of numerous perceived injustices – his new attorneys plan an appeal. During that call, Raniere also agreed to talk to Dateline producer Tim Mullender, who spent three years following the NXIVM story.

TIM MULLENDER: Our first question really is: you say that many people might consider you evil or despicable. Do you apologize?

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): Yes, I apologize for my participation in all of this, this pain and suffering. I’ve clearly participated. This is a horrible situation.

TIM MULLENDER: You say it’s a horrible situation and there has been pain and suffering. Then why do you think you’re innocent? That doesn’t make sense.

Keith Raniere

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): Well, being innocent of crimes and being innocent, if you will, of any wrongdoing. You know, people cause damage inadvertently and well intentioned damages – and they don’t mean to damage. But it happens.

TIM MULLENDER: You’re sorry for some of the damage that you’ve caused these victims. What damage do you mean? The branding that you ordered? Or the calorie or sleep deprivation of the members of DOS. What do you mean that you apologize and you’re sorry for the damage you’ve caused?

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): OK. And I think the damage I participated in, because I don’t believe we’re the cause of all that we are because more or less. But all the damages I can fathom I participated in and I feel responsible for – it’s not just a matter of being a cause at all myself. I’m involved in the cause of it and that that haunts me forever.

KATE SNOW (voice over): During our call, which was kept to a strict time limit, He denied being the mastermind behind the branding, despite the taped evidence played in court.

TIM MULLENDER: Did you order the branding to be done on the DOS members?

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): No. Not only that, I didn’t come up with the branding. If you look at my long term partners, I’m even against tattooing. I don’t have tattoos, none of my partners have tattoos. If my partners want to get them, that’s up to them. But I am dissuasive of it – and they even chose to do it without anesthetic so that they would feel it. No, no ordering whatsoever. Someone being branded, they agreed to it as one of the four conditions to even be considered for entrance into the sorority.

TIM MULLENDER: When you heard about the branding. Did you try to stop it?

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): No. But I was slightly, in a way, almost embarrassed at first. I thought, ‘well, if it was Albert Einstein’s initials, no one would care’. And then I thought ‘if it was Brad Pitt and his initials, maybe you have some jealous husband’, but that’s not what I’m like. So I took it as an honorary thing, a tribute thing, and that brand was going to be tattooed over anyway. It was symbolic.

KATE SNOW: And as for the so-called collateral that was used to blackmail.

TIM MULLENDER: Many DOS members will find that you did not the collateral, but that was testified to in trial that you would you were saying you needed the collateral to be better or wasn’t good enough. So you’re now saying that you did not see any of this collateral?

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): I did not take the collateral at all. I did not have I did not have possession of the collateral whatsoever.

TIM MULLENDER: But you’re saying you did not see any of this collateral because there was testimony…

KEITH RANIERE (on phone): Nothing. Nothing. No, I did not. I did not. I have seen some of the collateral. I think of the collateral also…

Dateline Collateral Damage Nxivm

KATE SNOW (voice over): The prison call ended abruptly, before we could ask him any more questions. Last month, Raniere was transferred to a federal prison in Arizona, far from his New York followers. Allison Mack, who is awaiting sentencing, has filed for divorce from Nicki. Danielle Roberts is waiting to hear if she’ll lose her medical license. Clare Bronfman has been sentenced to six years in prison and India Oxenberg has found love, and is engaged.

CATHERINE OXEMBERG: She’s a remarkable young woman. And it’s like she’s intact, but at the same time, she’s not completely unscathed. I mean, she was brutalized and traumatized, but she’s not been broken.

KATE SNOW (voice over): But getting here was even more traumatic than she ever imagined.

KATE SNOW: Seven years of your life spent and next time you finally leave, you get your life together. You get a job, you move back to California and you’re finally reuniting with your mom.

INDIA OXENBERG: I moved in with my mother and the objective was for my mom and I to build this farm together in Malibu. And we had worked on it a couple of months during the summer. We were rebuilding, we were renovating. We were moving in come fall…

KATE SNOW (voice over):  And then the unthinkable.

INDIA OXENBERG: And four days after moving in, the fire destroyed everything to a couple of inches of ash. So, everything that I owned, that my mother owned, that my fiancé owned, every heirloom, every painting, every photograph was gone. And for me, gives me chills, actually, it was just so shocking. But at the same time, as I was losing everything, it was the first time that I had had my family intact. I almost felt like a relief. It was like everything was gone. And now we were here and we were able to start new. We have the most important things which are each other. So it’s been a lot.

LESTER HOLT: That’s all for now. I’m Lester Holt, thanks for joining us.

About the author

Paul Serran

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  • Marc Agnifilo: “I think this is a case that’s based on very limited roles of what’s appropriate sexually”

    Yeah. It’s not appropriate to brand a bunch of women on their pussies with your initials. After having blackmailed them.

    It’s not appropriate to call women your “slaves” and act as their master because you hold naked pictures of them as “collateral”.

    And it’s not appropriate for an adult man to screw a 15 year old girl.

    These things are not considered appropriate in the age and society in which we happen to live. In fact they are illegal. Which explains why your client is now in prison. For life.

    What a surprise that the jury didn’t buy your argument, Marc.

    “Puritanism”, Marc? Really?

    • Aristotle,

      Was it appropriate for India to have slaves? For her to have collateral on them?

      Was it appropriate for Sarah to have slaves? For her to have collateral on them? And unlike India, Sarah was an executive and center owner who made substantial income from the organization.

      Was it appropriate for Cami to go down on Nicole? I would assume not, since two people who didn’t go down on her, and one of whom wasn’t even aware of it until after the fact, are serving prison time for it.

      Was it appropriate for Jessica to steal collateral, blackmail people with it, and then release it? In other words, actually doing the thing that the defendants in the case never did?

      Is it appropriate that Mark and Sarah are plaintiffs in a civil lawsuit in which they are accusing the defendants of doing things that Mark and Sarah actually did to them?

      Is it appropriate for a federal prosecutor to threaten someone with a RICO charge based on a crime an associate allegedly committed a year and a half before the two even met?

      Is it appropriate for that prosecutor to fraternize with a senior officer in the company that she prosecuted, who conveniently was never charged with a crime despite being near the top of the pyramid?

      It seems like a lot of inappropriate things happened involving this case. Cherry picking bits and pieces of information that fit the official narrative to make it seem like only Raniere and the people who support him engaged in bad behavior helps no one, and serves no purpose.

      Aristotle, what do you think the Salzmans have on Sarah and Mark that caused them to be dropped from the civil suit?

      I bet you a can of Pepsi that it was something inappropriate.

      • India, Sarah, Bonnie and Lauren recognised they were involved with something toxic, and when questioned by law enforcement admitted it at the earliest opportunity. The others, including Nicki, Michele and the other less screwable dos members just hung on for the group blowjob. Maybe they’ll get lucky in, 118 years. Two down.

      • Again with these boring f****** rhetorical questions. This may work as a tactic in your cult but it’s not as effective as you believe in the real world. And again with the boring contest about who was worse in the cult. They all sucked some of them sucked worse. And some of them did things that are criminal and for that they are paying their debt to society.

        • There are people who did nothing criminal who are paying a debt to society they don’t owe, because they have positions that are unpopular.

          There are other people who did do something criminal who have paid no debt to society, and have made money from this. All because they have positions that are popular.

          Why is it so hard for people to answer the tough questions that I ask? Because maybe they’ll have to reconsider some of their positions? Because if everyone was held to the same standard of conduct, we would be looking at a different case?

          Because there are precedents that were established in this case that you would otherwise not support if emotion was taken out of it?

          What happened to Nicole was either an illegal sex act or it wasn’t. If it was, the perpetrator who committed the act was never charged. If it wasn’t, an innocent woman was wrongfully imprisoned.

          Which is it?

  • Keith ran away. From Catherine Oxenberg!

    Somethin’ ain’t right with that boy. He also ran away from one of his girls when she confronted him on the volleyball court. Hid in the bathroom. And when the Mexican Federal Police came with a warrant for his arrest he boldly hid in a closet.

    He was afraid to drive a car. Got driven around by his minions. He was practically a recluse, hardly ever straying from his little corner of upstate NY.

    Fearful, cowardly, reclusive. He victimized women, taking pleasure in humiliating them. The only way he could feel like a man.

    Such a contemptible pup.

    He boasted and bragged shamelessly. All part of the pattern. His absurd lies about his childhood athletic accomplishments (of all things!) His fictional boyhood judo championship.

    An overweight, short, awkward, geeky braggart. A physical coward. I wonder how he’s faring in prison these days?

  • Love how Raniere ran home when he saw Catherine Oxenberg. It’s would be comical if not so punishing for his victims.

    Such Cowardice by Keith.

  • It’s clear how disturbed Danielle Roberts is- the women wanted this and asked for this— really?

    Thankful she lost her license. Blaming the victim is sign of abuser.

    Sadistic that she branded them knowing the pain she was inflicting.

    • Listen to her side of the story. They agreed to the brand as part of entry to the group. No one raised objections to her during the branding. They thanked her and hugged her afterwards.

      She never abused anyone and never victimized anyone. That’s why she was never charged with a crime (because none was committed), and why the medical board ruled in her favor, before opening up a second investigation where the result was fixed ahead of time based on media pressure.

      Does it bother you that a precedent has been set where people can lose professional licenses based on what they do in their private lives, not involving co-workers, clients or patients, not involving their profession, and that are not illegal?

      It should.

      • Does it bother you that these women were held down naked,”legs spread”, like a sacrifice? It should.

        Doesn’t sound any too voluntary to me, being held down and burned.

        Does it bother you that these women were told it was women only group, and all about female empowerment, while in fact DOS was created by, and for the benefit of, Keith Raniere?

        It should.

        Does it bother you that these women weren’t told that the symbol burned onto their bodies was in truth Keith Raniere’s initials? It should.

        It should’ve bothered (former) Doc Roberts, too.

        There is such a thing as professional ethics. There’s such a thing as common human decency too.

        I don’t expect you dead-enders to understand. Your cult was deeply immoral from top to bottom. It appealed to the most selfish motives and taught cruelty and subservience as “ethics”. Raniere taught about rapeable babies and you clowns continued to support him.

        Well the asshole’s in prison now and you losers are angry at the world, choking on your own bile. Good.

        • Too bad that doing something that you find morally questionable isn’t grounds for losing a medical license if it is not illegal, not the practice of medicine, and does not involve a patient.

          If we’re going after doctors for things they do in their private lives that are outside the norm, but not illegal, we might find ourselves short of qualified medical professionals.

          Or are we only holding Dr. Roberts to this standard to satisfy the peons’ thirst for blood?

      • . How human beings could do such atrocities against others, look no further than the ugly ex doctor here. A vile vile piece of human crap you are Danielle Roberts. Do something productive with your life. Get off your yoga mat and be of service to vulnerable women instead of scarring them on demand.

      • They couldn’t raise objections during the branding. Their responses were scripted by Keith. And there was the threat of blackmail being released.

        • Very astute points. They also didn’t know what they were branded with and once they did they were not happy about it being Keith’s initials. To say they didn’t complain at the time when they didn’t even fully understand what had been done to them is very disingenuous and paints a very fake picture of The Branding reality. Such a deception and the sharing of their nude spread legged video being sent to Keith wouldn’t even have occurred to them because they were told there were no men involved in the organization at all. So the false narrative Kevin puts forth is just complete b*******. As per usual.

          • They also didn’t know what they were branded with?

            Really??. Because ~

            India stated she watched and saw Danielle’s brand being done before her own was done so pretty sure she knew what it was.

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.” In addition, 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 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 premieres on May 22, 2022.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Parlato,_Jr.

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083
Email: frankparlato@gmail.com

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