NXIVM leader guilty on all charges

Nxivm leader Keith Raniere found guilty of all counts in sex cult trial

Nxivm leader Keith Raniere found guilty of all counts in sex cult trial

Since early May, jurors have been hearing testimony from what prosecutors say are former "sex slaves" who spoke about the torment of being branded with Raniere's initials - their "supreme master", often referred to as "Vanguard". Prosecutors said that he created a secret sorority within Nxivm called DOS in which female "slaves" turned over compromising materials that were used to blackmail them. "I think he's not surprised, but he maintains that he didn't mean to do anything wrong".

Newer members believed NXIVM to be a self-help business that offered pricey coaching and training workshops based on its philosophy of "a new ethical understanding" that enables "humanity to rise to its noble possibility", as the group described on its now defunct website, according to court documents. He was emotionless as the verdict was read and is due to be sentenced on September 25.

While prosecutors referred to Raniere as a "crime boss", his attorney, Marc Agnifilo, said during closing arguments Monday that "being repulsive" is not a crime punishable by law.

She said this happened just before a planned group oral sex session was to occur.

There was no shortage whatsoever of lurid testimony over the course of an accused sex cult leader's trial in the Eastern District of NY, and it didn't take long for a jury of his peers to reach a verdict. They include Nxivm president Nancy Salzman, her daughter Lauren Salzman,"Smallville" actress Allison Mack and Seagram liquor heiress Claire Bronfman, who bankrolled the group for years. Her daughter India left NXIVM after her mother became an outspoken critic of the group. Prosecutors said he took a series of nude photos of the teen that were shown at trial, one by one, to the eight women and four men who comprised the jury.

"I had to save a child who was caught in the grips of this cult, so I wasn't going to stop until I succeeded".

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"You saw him for what he was, a conman, a predator, a crime boss", Penza said, adding that Raniere had "tapped into a never-ending flow of women and money" and calling him a "crime boss with no limits and no checks on his power". "We don't convict people in this country for being repulsive or offensive", he said.

Raniere was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Mexico previous year. What she didn't plead guilty to were the sex trafficking and sex trafficking conspiracy charges in the indictment.

Kyra Jenner, who led the federal prosecution that convicted preacher Tony Alamo, said she was struck by the similar way Alamo and Raniere were able to "normalize completely aberrant behavior" for their victims.

The women Raniere recruited for his "inner circle" saw him as their master, and they eventually came to view themselves as "masters" as they recruited more women to be their "slaves", a criminal complaint said. Another explained how Raniere lured her to a home where she was blindfolded and bound to a table so that another woman could perform a sex act on her. And since the group never released any of the slaves' collateral, "Where's the extortion?" he asked.

But Penza accused Raniere of building a personal fiefdom through abuse and control.

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