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The former "slaves" of NXIVM founder Keith Raniere take part in his conviction


Fifteen of Keith Raniere's former "slaves" faced him on Tuesday in court for "parasites", "monsters" and "psychological terrorists" before he was sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison.

From 1998, the 60-year-old Raniere was sentenced to 120 years in prison for leading the cult. During this time, he sexually enslaved, wielded, and starved women. He claims he is innocent and misunderstood.

The court heard that he was recruiting a total of 17,000 people for NXIVM. Fifteen of them spoke at the hearing.

Among them were Toni Natalie, the girlfriend he was with when he started the cult, India Oxenberg, daughter of dynasty actress Catherine Oxenberg, and a woman who called her name just like Camila. She was his first known victim and told the court how he raped her when she was 15 and he was 45 in 2005.

Others are Angela Ucci and Barbara Bouchey. They belong to a group known as "NXIVM 9" – some of the first to be targeted by Raniere.

Angela Ucci, Barbara Bouchey, an unnamed victim, and Susan Dones posed together in court after Raniere's conviction

Toni Natalie, Raniere's friend when he started the cult, was there too. She also spoke

Toni Natalie, Raniere's friend when he started the cult, was there too. She also spoke

India Oxenberg, 29, the daughter of Dynasty actress Catherine Oxenberg, issued a declaration of effectiveness

India Oxenberg, 29, the daughter of Dynasty actress Catherine Oxenberg, issued a declaration of effectiveness

India looked directly at Raniere as she gave her testimony on the stand

India looked directly at Raniere as she gave her testimony on the stand

These women posed in solidarity in front of the courtroom after Raniere was sentenced.

Ucci described the day as the "finale" of his reign of terror. Catherine Oxenberg spoke to GMA Wednesday morning to refer to Raniere as a "hideous monster". She tried for years to get her daughter out of the cult.

Raniere faced the maximum sentence in prison after being convicted of child sex trafficking, conspiracy and conspiracy to commit forced labor in June 2019.

As the founder of NXIVM, the court heard the cultic group put women on starvation diets, branded them with their initials, and ordered them to have sex with him.

India's mother Catherine on Wednesday called Raniere a "hideous monster" whose reign was over

India's mother Catherine called Raniere a "hideous monster" on Wednesday whose reign had come to an end

His sentencing was postponed Tuesday because so many people showed up to attend. India Oxenberg, daughter of dynasty actress Catherine Oxenberg, was one of the speakers.

She said Raniere treated her like his "human science experiment", calling him a "legitimate little princess" and a sexual predator. She complained that she "had to spend the rest of my life with Keith Raneire's initials burned into me".

Raniere's lawyers moved to be sentenced to 15 years. After Judge Nicholas Garaufis informed the judge that he had "no remorse" for the crimes for "not committing" them, he passed the sentence, which means that he will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Judge Garaufis described Raniere as "ruthless and adamant" in crimes that were "particularly egregious" for targeting girls and young women, and said, "To him, the brave victims are … liars. Mr. Raniere remains unmoved. … (He) has therefore failed to show remorse. & # 39;

He handed the unusually high sentence in Brooklyn federal court after hearing tortured testimony from victims of a sex trafficking conspiracy that led to Raniere's conviction last year, along with unrepentant statements from the defendant himself.

“I think I am innocent of the charges. … It is true, I have no regrets about the crimes that I do not believe I committed, "said Raniere.

NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere was sentenced to 120 years in prison after a dramatic hearing confronting 15 of his victims

Raniere watches during his judgment on Tuesday

NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere was sentenced to 120 years in prison after a dramatic hearing confronting 15 of his victims

Due to social distancing rules, fewer people are now allowed in courtrooms than before. More than an hour after Raniere's scheduled hearing time, court officials were trying to decide whether to open a second courtroom for the overabundance of media and victims who appeared in Brooklyn Criminal Court on Tuesday.

Eventually it started with a testimony from a woman who called herself Camila. Raniere moved her and her sister from Mexico to the United States in 2005. She called him a "monster".

15 women gave statements on Tuesday about the impact of the victims. Among them were former friends of Raniere and former victims. They called him a "parasite" and a "psychological terrorist".

& # 39; He kept me busy for so long. I have a hard time pronouncing his name, so I'll just refer to him as "he".

"I can still hear his voice in my head – it's still a daily struggle," said Camila.

She also told the court that she was 15 years old and he was 45 years old when he raped her. He denies it.

“I can still hear his voice in my head – it continues to be a daily struggle

& # 39; Camila & # 39; – Raniere's first victim, who says he raped her in 2005

& # 39; He manipulated me for what he wanted.

“I became inaccessible to my parents, brother, and friends until I had no one to worry about. He knew the things that were most important to me and what I feared and used them against me, ”she said

Raniere has been convicted of blackmail, extortion conspiracy, wire fraud conspiracy, forced labor conspiracy, sex trafficking, sex trafficking conspiracy, and attempted sex trafficking, but not rape.

He told me to keep it a secret and he asked me to sneak out of the house to meet me in a place where we would be isolated from everyone.

"He took naked pictures of me – the experience of being photographed sticks in my memory," she said.

She also told the court that he forced her to weigh less than 100 pounds and that he once got her to have an abortion.

The chances of forbearance seemed to have dissipated with the recent conviction of Clare Bronfman, 41, an heir to the Seagram's alcoholic fortune, for her role in the cult.

Bronfman was sentenced to nearly seven years in prison. The prosecution had only searched for five years. Ex-supporters told the judge that Bronfman spent years using her wealth to try to silence NXIVM defectors.

Former NXIVM member and Raniere supporter Marc Elliot said, “We should all fight for due process, no matter how much you dislike it or how impractical it is. Because if someone or any society ever turns you on, you'd better hope to God that the due process and laws still exist to keep you safe. & # 39;

Kristen Keefe delivers a statement on the implications of the victim at the sex trafficking and extortion hearing against NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere, while Raniere listens

Kristen Keefe delivers a statement on the implications of the victim at the sex trafficking and extortion hearing against NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere, while Raniere listens

Supporter Marc Elliot speaks to reporters after the hearing on Tuesday. Nicki Clyne, second from left, is one of those who also stand by Raniere

Supporter Marc Elliot speaks to reporters after the hearing on Tuesday. Nicki Clyne, second from left, is one of those who also stand by Raniere

Raniere's ex-girlfriend Toni Natalie, with whom he dated in the 1990s, said he would have to be imprisoned for life "like they did with Charles Manson."

Raniere founded NXIVM in Albany, New York, in 1998 and recruited more than 17,000 people between then and 2017 to promise them self-help.

You played a doctorate and I was your human science experiment

But within the secret organization there was an even more secret subdivision of which he was the master.

Under the name of DOS, women were his sexual slaves and submitted entirely to his control.

They were branded with his initials, starved, deprived of sleep and forced to engage in group sex, and blackmailed with "collateral" provided in the form of incriminating photos, videos or information about them or their families.

Raniere also punished young women, including a teenager who was held in a room for two years for showing a romantic interest in another man, according to prosecutors.

Supporters: Linda Chung (left), Nicki Clyne (center) and Michelle Hatchette leave federal court in Brooklyn after the hearing on self-improvement guru Keith Raniere on Tuesday. Raniere himself claims he didn't do anything wrong and still enjoys the support of some loyal followers. Fifty people wrote a letter to the judge asking for indulgence.

Supporters: Linda Chung (left), Nicki Clyne (center) and Michelle Hatchette leave federal court in Brooklyn after the hearing on self-improvement guru Keith Raniere on Tuesday. Raniere himself claims he didn't do anything wrong and still enjoys the support of some loyal followers. Fifty people wrote a letter to the judge asking for indulgence.

NXIVM supporter Nicki Clyne is one of those who stand by Raniere. She will be shown in the Brooklyn court on Tuesday, waiting for the trial to begin

NXIVM supporter Nicki Clyne is one of those who stand by Raniere. She will be shown in the Brooklyn court on Tuesday, waiting for the trial to begin

NXIVM supporter Nicki Clyne is one of those who stand by Raniere. She will be shown in the Brooklyn court on Tuesday, waiting for the trial to begin

The cult included actresses Allison Mack, who is awaiting her own conviction in prison, and India Oxenberg, the daughter of dynasty actress Catherine Oxenberg, who fled and worked with the authorities to convict Raniere.

She previously shared how she was brainwashed for seven years to believe Raniere would help her.

“What I thought I was learning was self-help and personal growth. What I learned was the opposite. It was inhuman, "she said in a recent interview.

India was among those expected to testify about the impact of the victims when Raniere was sentenced Tuesday morning.

She said she "pained" herself what to tell him when they faced each other.

The 29-year-old arrived at court wearing a mask.

Raniere himself claims he didn't do anything wrong and still enjoys the support of some loyal followers.

Fifty people wrote a letter to the judge asking for indulgence.

Nicki Clyne is one of those who stand by Raniere. She was seen outside the courtroom on Tuesday morning before the trial began.

Clyne is married to Smallville actress Allison Mack, but authorities say it is a fake marriage to help Canadian Clyne circumvent immigration laws.

Raniere branded the women who were part of DOS - a division of NXIVM - with his initials

Raniere branded the women who were part of DOS – a division of NXIVM – with his initials

Allison Mack has not yet been convicted

Clare Bronfman was sentenced to 81 months

Allison Mack (left) has yet to be sentenced. Seagram heiress Clare Bronfman (right) was sentenced to 81 months in prison

Mack and Oxenberg together at Mack's Brooklyn home in 2018. Oxenberg eventually worked with prosecutors to put Mack and leader Keith Raniere behind bars

Mack and Oxenberg together at Mack's Brooklyn home in 2018. Oxenberg eventually worked with prosecutors to put Mack and leader Keith Raniere behind bars

She claims that everyone involved in NXIVM consented to her participation.

In a video project with other followers called "Dossier Project," she said, "Hopefully everyone who sees this will see that we've all become ** women."

Bronfman and Mack were arrested in April 2018, a month after Raniere was taken into custody in Mexico.

Both then bailed out in April 2019 and pleaded guilty to bringing blackmail charges in the context of plea agreements to reduce their sentences.

Bronfman has been sentenced to 81 months in prison, but Mack has not yet been sentenced.

Raniere founded Nxivm with Nancy Salzman, a psychiatric nurse.

It was designed as a support group and is based in Albany, New York.

Executive Success Programs, Inc. was another name for the courses. Until then, Raniere had tried and failed several times to start his own company.

He had grown up in Suffern, New York, with divorced parents, one of whom worked in advertising.

After graduating from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York State in 1982, he dabbled in marketing before launching Nxivm.

By the time he started the organization, he was in a relationship with Toni Natalie, the woman who introduced him to Salzman.

Natalie later recalled that Salzman was enthusiastic about Raniere, as were many other women who met him.

Raniere grew up in New York and tried his hand at marketing before starting self-help programs in the late 1990s

Raniere grew up in New York and tried his hand at marketing before starting self-help programs in the late 1990s

Raniere received a white sash from the Dalai Lama in Albany, New York, in 2009

Raniere received a white sash from the Dalai Lama in Albany, New York, in 2009

15 women gave statements on Tuesday about the impact of the victims. Among them were former friends of Raniere and former victims. They called him a "parasite" and a "psychological terrorist".

15 women gave statements on Tuesday about the impact of the victims. Among them were former friends of Raniere and former victims. They called him a "parasite" and a "psychological terrorist".

A court sketch by Raniere in June 2019 when he was convicted on seven charges, including child pornography and sex trafficking

A court sketch by Raniere in June 2019 when he was convicted on seven charges, including child pornography and sex trafficking

One of the turning points in the cult came in 2002 when Salzman and Raniere recruited members of the influential Bronfman family.

The Bronfmans come from the Seagram liquor empire and are heirs to billions.

According to his indictment, Raniere got Clare Bronfman to give him millions over the years.

Her sister Sara wasn't that enthusiastic. It was through the Bronfman Sisters that the first signs of trouble appeared in Nxivm.

In 2003, Clare told her father that she had loaned Nxivm $ 2 million. He grew suspicious and publicly accused Raniere of cultivating a Forbes article.

Over the next several years, they tried to legitimize themselves with healthy associations while showing Raniere the cult of sexual bondage behind closed doors.

In 2009, the Dalai Lama even performed with Raniere at an event in Albany, NY.

Toni Natalie, Rainiere's ex-girlfriend, wrote this book

Toni Natalie, Rainiere's ex-girlfriend, wrote this book

In 2011, actresses Allison Mack and India Oxenberg became the group's newest recruits.

Mack rose quickly through the ranks and got close to Raniere, who was referred to by cult members as the "avant-garde"

DOS was created in 2015. It stands for "Dominus Obsequious Sororium" – which means "master over slaves" in Latin.

It was a subdivision within the cult where women were branded with Ranieres initials and had to practice sexual servitude.

Oxenberg has shared in the past how she was enslaved to Mack.

Part of the discipline training was controlling how many calories people ate.

She has since revealed that she would have to ask for permission when to eat.

Raniere's indictment refers to DOS as a "pyramid".

Almost all DOS recruits were "vulnerable".

Often times, in identifying potential slaves, the masters were directed against women who were currently having difficulties in their lives, including dissatisfaction with the pace of their progress in Nxivm.

"While a master avoids the words" master "and" slave "in the first phase of recruitment, he tells his potential slave that the potential slave has the opportunity to join an organization that would change their life," Raniere's indictment read .

The master then told the future slave that in order to learn more, she would have to provide "collateral" to ensure that the future slave kept what she wanted to learn secret.

"Collateral consisted of material or information that the prospective slave did not want to reveal because it would be ruinous for the prospective slave himself and / or for someone close to her."

Toni Natalie, second from left, and India Oxenberg, right, arrive with their attorneys at federal court in Brooklyn for a hearing

Toni Natalie (second from left) and India Oxenberg (right) arrive with their attorneys at federal court in Brooklyn for a hearing

India Oxenberg makes an impact statement on the victim

India Oxenberg makes a statement on the impact of the victim

Raniere was also accused of trafficking at least one young woman from Mexico.

Ms. Daniela had received a scholarship to a prestigious school in Switzerland, but she gave up to travel to the US and join NXIVM.

At Raniere's trial, she testified that he had locked her in a room for almost two years because she had shown a romantic interest in another man.

She said he was controlling her after he illegally snuck her into the country from Canada.

“Sex meant access when it came to Keith … I was no doubt a prisoner from the moment I was illegal in the country.

"Over time, I realized that I couldn't walk," she said of his trial.

She said she first had sex with him on "dingy" sheets when she was 18, but her younger sister slept with him when she was only 16.

A timeline from NXIVM

1998: NXIVM is founded

Raniere founded Nxivm with Nancy Salzman, a psychiatric nurse. It was designed as a support group and is based in Albany, New York.

Executive Success Programs, Inc. was another name for the courses. Until then, Raniere had tried and failed several times to start his own company.

He had grown up in Suffern, New York, with divorced parents, one of whom worked in advertising.

After graduating from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York State in 1982, he dabbled in marketing before launching Nxivm.

By the time he started the organization, he was in a relationship with Toni Natalie, the woman who introduced him to Salzman. Natalie later recalled that Salzman was enthusiastic about Raniere, as were many other women who met him.

In 2002, Bronfmans recruited

One of the turning points in the cult came in 2002 when Salzman and Raniere recruited members of the influential Bronfman family.

The Bronfmans come from the Seagram liquor empire and are heirs to billions.

According to his indictment, Raniere got Clare Bronfman to give him millions over the years.

Her sister Sara wasn't that enthusiastic. It was through the Bronfman Sisters that the first signs of trouble appeared in Nxivm.

In 2003, Clare told her father that she had loaned Nxivm $ 2 million. He grew suspicious and publicly accused Raniere of cultivating a Forbes article.

Over the next several years, they tried to legitimize themselves with healthy associations while showing Raniere the cult of sexual bondage behind closed doors.

In 2009, the Dalai Lama even performed with Raniere at an event in Albany, NY.

2011 – Allison Mack and India Oxenberg recruit

In 2011, actresses Allison Mack and India Oxenberg became the group's newest recruits.

Mack quickly rose through the ranks and got close to Raniere, who was referred to by cult members as the "avant-garde".

2015 – DOS is created

DOS was the name of the secret subdivision within the cult in which women were branded with Raniere's initials and had to practice sexual bondage.

Oxenberg has shared in the past how she was enslaved to Mack. Part of the discipline training was controlling how many calories people ate.

She'd have to ask for permission when to eat, she has since revealed.

Raniere's indictment refers to DOS as a "pyramid".

“DOS functions as a pyramid with levels of“ slaves ”led by“ masters. ”Slaves are expected to recruit (and thus become masters) of their own, who in turn are not only their own masters, but also their own to be owed to the gentlemen standing above them in the DOS pyramid.

As the highest master, Raniere alone forms the top of the pyramid. With the exception of Raniere, all DOS participants are women. Raniere's status as the head of the pyramid was hidden from all newly enlisted slaves, except those directly below Raniere, ”it says.

2017 – Investigation opened after former members took the floor

The Justice Department began investigating Raniere in 2017 after some of its former members contacted him to share information about DOS.

He moved from Albany, NY to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

March 2018: Raniere is arrested at his villa in Mexico

April 2018: Allison Mack is arrested in Brooklyn

July 2018: Clare Bronfman arrested in New York City

April 2019: Bronfman and Mack both plead guilty. Bronfman has been convicted, but Mack has not yet been convicted

June 2019: Raniere is found guilty on all counts

October 2020: Raniere is convicted

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