Keith Raniere will never be a free man again. The leader of NXIVM — the organization that brainwashed women into ‘sex slaves’ — was sentenced to over a century in prison for his crimes.
Keith Raniere learned his fate on Oct. 27, 2020, more than a year after the 60-year-old NXIVM founder was convicted of a range of horrendous charges stemming from his Upstate New York sex cult. Among those charges was one count of racketeering, a conviction that alone would put him away for life. After a prolonged delay at the Brooklyn federal courtroom, Keith was sentenced to 120 years, a punishment that was welcomed by his victims and denounced by his fervent supporters.
Ahead of today’s sentencing, it was clear that Keith would likely never breathe the air of a free man. A jury in a Brooklyn federal court needed only five hours of deliberations to find him guilty on all counts, including racketeering, sex trafficking, conspiracy, forced labor, identity theft, sexual exploitation of a child, and possession of child pornography. Initially billing NXIVM as a self-help organization, Keith founded DOS, a secret sorority/sex cult. Members selected for DOS were branded with a logo that included Keith’s initials. They were also required to provide “collateral,” according to The New York Times, which included embarrassing and incriminating information. This material was used to coerce women into having sex with Keith.
Ahead of Keith’s sentencing, federal prosecutors cited the severity of his crimes and the lack of remorse in his actions as reasons why Keith should get life in prison. “Raniere wreaked a path of destruction through his victims’ lives,” the prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memo, per the New York Times, adding that Keith “concealed his abuse behind the smoke screen of his supposed ‘personal growth’ programs — a charade he continues to this day.”
In September, Clare Bronfman, an heir to the Seagram’s liquor fortune, was sentenced to 81 months (6+ years) in prison for her role in NXIVM, per the Associated Press. Clare’s wealth helped finance NXIVM, and she was among the high-profile members of the organization, including actresses Allison Mack and Nicki Clyne.
Clare pleaded guilty to conspiring to conceal and harbor an undocumented immigrant for financial gain and fraudulent use of identification in April 2019. The judge issued the harsh sentence – the defense was seeking three years of probation while the prosecution was looking for five years in jail – because he thought Bronfman could “have distanced herself from him” when she became aware of his sex-trafficking scheme. “Instead, she chose to double down on her support of Raniere.”
Allison Mack pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy and racketeering acts of state law extortion and forced labor. The Smallville actress admitted to being a higher-up in NXIVM/DOS, one that recruited women into the society as “slaves.” Allison admitted she wielded information to blackmail women into performing services for her. She faces up to 40 years in prison and is currently awaiting a sentencing date. She was originally meant to be sentenced in September 2019, but the date keeps getting postponed.