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Seagram’s Heiress Sentenced In Nxivm Intercourse Trafficking Ring Case – NPR

Seagram’s Heiress Sentenced In Nxivm Intercourse Trafficking Ring Case – NPR

Clare Bronfman, the Seagram’s liquor fortune inheritor, was sentenced to 81-months in jail for her position in defending Keith Raniere, the disgraced chief of Nxivm, who was convicted of turning ladies into intercourse slaves.

John Minchillo/AP


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John Minchillo/AP

Clare Bronfman, the Seagram’s liquor fortune inheritor, was sentenced to 81-months in jail for her position in defending Keith Raniere, the disgraced chief of Nxivm, who was convicted of turning ladies into intercourse slaves.

John Minchillo/AP

An heiress to the Seagram’s liquor fortune has been sentenced to almost seven years in jail for fraud and compelled labor as a number one member of Nxivm, a cult-like self-help group accused of holding ladies captive, and coercing them into having intercourse with the group’s chief.

Clare Bronfman, 41, was a member of Nxvim — pronounced Nehk-see-um — for 15 years, finally becoming a member of its government board and bankrolling quite a few lawsuits in opposition to critics of the secretive group led by Keith Raniere.

Bronfman pleaded responsible to felony expenses of harboring a lady who was within the U.S. illegally and the fraudulent use of a deceased particular person’s identification.

In a listening to that went on for greater than three hours, U.S. District Decide Nicholas Garaufis scolded Bronfman for utilizing her fortune to guard Raniere even after she turned conscious of the intercourse trafficking ring.

“I’m troubled by proof suggesting that Ms. Bronfman repeatedly and persistently leveraged her wealth and social standing as a way of intimidating, controlling, and punishing” Nxivm’s enemies, Garaufis mentioned on Wednesday, according to The New York Occasions.

However quite than distancing herself from the chief of the group, whom authorities have referred to as a “modern-day Svengali,” Garaufis mentioned, “She selected to double down on her help of Raniere.”

Heiress Charged With Supporting Sex-Trafficking Operation

The group was based mostly in upstate New York however grew to have a world presence. It espoused a philosophy of self-improvement however investigators that through the years it turned a car for recruiting, grooming and even branding an interior circle of feminine intercourse slaves for Raniere, who was often called “Vanguard.”

Raniere was convicted in June 2019 on expenses of intercourse trafficking, compelled labor, conspiracy, human trafficking and a number of counts of racketeering — together with sexual exploitation of a kid.

NXIVM Leader Keith Raniere Found Guilty Of All Charges In Sex Cult Case

Earlier than Bronfman’s sentence was introduced on Wednesday, a number of victims provided emotional statements of ruined marriages, careers, fortunes and lives.

Amongst them was Barbara Bouchey, a former Nxivm member who defected and claims she continues to be hounded by Bronfman and her attorneys.

“You have been below home arrest for 2 years, but you have got by no means stopped,” Bouchey tearfully told the courtroom, The Related Press reported.

“Will you by no means cease?” she requested Bronfman, who sat silently on the protection desk.

Bronfman pleaded responsible final 12 months to bank card fraud on behalf of Raniere. She additionally admitted to illegally harboring a lady who was within the U.S. on an expired visa for unpaid “labor and companies.”

Although she remained quiet for a lot of the proceedings, Bronfman did deal with the unnamed lady on Wednesday, saying, “I actually hope you may forgive me and stay a contented life.”

She additionally advised the courtroom that she is grateful for the help she’s continued to obtain.

“It doesn’t suggest I have not made errors as a result of I’ve made errors,” Bronfman mentioned.

She didn’t point out Raniere, nonetheless, in a letter to the courtroom final month. She mentioned Nxivm had “vastly modified my life for the higher” and that she would not denounce its chief.

A part of her plea settlement included a $500,000 positive and the forfeiture of $6 million of her fortune, a sum prosecutors say is just a fraction of her wealth. Bronfman was additionally ordered to pay a Nxivm sufferer almost $100,000.

The 41-year-old heiress was taken into custody to start her 6-year and nine-month sentence instantly after her look Wednesday.

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