NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere says the government planted child porn on his computer and cameras to convict him
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NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere says the government planted child porn on his computer and cameras to convict him

NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere says the government planted child porn on his computer and cameras to convict him 

NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere has claimed the government fabricated and planted child porn on his computers and cameras in an effort to send him to prisom. 

In a 42-page filing on Tuesday, his attorneys said that the tampering happened when FBI agents seized evidence from his home in 2018. 

They say they went right for a computer hard drive and camera, ignoring all other items of evidence in Raniere’s home, and that suspiciously named folders containing child porn were later discovered. 

Raniere’s attorneys claim that it not only wins him the right to a new trial but that the apparent evidence tampering ‘shocks the conscience’. 

‘In its prosecution of Keith Raniere, the government manufactured child pornography and planted it on a computer hard drive to tie it to him. 

‘Additionally, the government falsified, fabricated, and manipulated all the key evidence it used to convict Mr. Raniere of the most heinous crimes he was charged with, that is, possession of child pornography and sexual exploitation of a child – for purportedly taking twenty-two contraband photographs in 2005. 

‘Such extensive government tampering renders the critical pieces of evidence used to convict him of these charges incompetent, unreliable, and invalid. 

‘The government’s conduct here not only shatters rights inherent in the concept of ordered liberty, but it also shocks the conscience,’ the filing, obtained by DailyMail.com, reads. 

The filing says Raniere’s suspicions are supported by Richard Kiper, Ph.D., a retired FBI Special Agent, Steven M. Abrams and  Wayne B. Norris, who are described as ‘accomplished forensic analysts’. 

‘All three experts agree that the electronic evidence in Mr. Raniere’s trial was extensively manipulated while in FBI custody and that it was falsified to fit the government’s narrative of criminal conduct. 

‘This newly discovered evidence of illegal tampering by the government is conclusive, indisputable, and shocking,’ his attorneys claim. 

They say that thumbnails were ‘altered’ to go from brunette to blonde, and that the metadata on some of the photos found on the hard drive and camera memory card was also altered. 

‘It was undoubtedly tampered with, as the thumbnails of a brunette impossibly became thumbnails of a blonde,’ Raniere’s lawyers say.

Raniere's attorneys claimed they didn't get enough time to question witness Lauren Salzman, who made a deal with prosecutors in exchange for her testimony

Raniere’s attorneys claimed they didn’t get enough time to question witness Lauren Salzman, who made a deal with prosecutors in exchange for her testimony

Victims of the cult told prosecutors how Raniere and other leaders brandished them with a burning piece of metal

Victims of the cult told prosecutors how Raniere and other leaders brandished them with a burning piece of metal 

Raniere on Tuesday tried to appeal his conviction, claiming through his lawyers that he didn’t get a fair shake in court because they weren’t given enough time to cross-examine witnesses. 

Heiress Clare Bronfman – who was also convicted for her role in the sex cult – also appealed her six year sentencing, claiming she was made an example of because she is so rich. 

Heiress Clare Bronfman is also appealing her sentence

Heiress Clare Bronfman is also appealing her sentence 

Raniere was convicted of sex trafficking in January 2019 and was sentenced to 120 years in prison in October 2020.

He did not appear in court on Tuesday as his attorney claimed that he did not get long enough to question witnesses, specifically Lauren Salzman, who struck a deal with prosecutors and escaped jail herself.

‘The defense did not get to ask all the questions the defense wanted. 

‘The intent was crucial to this case,’ Raniere’s attorney argued. 

The judges reserved a decision pending review. It’s unclear when they will return to court. 

In the same hearing, attorneys for Bronfman argued that she was given too harsh a sentence because of her wealth and privilege. 

‘Clearly, she was punished for her wealth, her privilege,’ her attorney said. 

Bronfman and Raniere were among those convicted of orchestrating and facilitating the cult, which drew in Hollywood actresses among victims under the guise of giving them a self-help course. 

Victims told prosecutors how they were starved, sleep-deprived and even brandished with a scalding metal symbol as part of the cult.

Raniere has always denied wrongdoing. 

At trial, prosecutors told how he had impregnated three sisters, all of whom he then forced to get abortions. 

At his appeal hearing on Tuesday, his attorneys said the abortions were irrelevant to the case and designed to prejudice a jury. 

Bronfman was convicted of conspiracy to conceal and harbor people who were not in the US legally for financial gain. 

She was sentenced to nearly seven years in prison –  a harsher sentence than some others who were found guilty. 

Her attorney said in court that she was made an example of because of her wealth.

Bronfman is an heiress to the Seagram’s liquor and beverages empire. 



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