Nxivm ‘Sex Cult’ Was Also a Huge Pyramid Scheme, Lawsuit Says 

January 31, 2020 Comments Off on Nxivm ‘Sex Cult’ Was Also a Huge Pyramid Scheme, Lawsuit Says 

Nxivm ‘Sex Cult’ Was Also a Huge Pyramid Scheme, Lawsuit Says        

Eighty people contended that they were bilked out of millions of dollars through a “coercive” scheme by the self-help group.

By Nicole Hong Jan. 29, 2020

The self-help group Nxivm gained a reputation as a “sex cult” last year after its leader, Keith Raniere, was convicted of coercing some of his female followers into sexual servitude, even creating a ritual in which they were branded with his initials.

But a lawsuit filed in federal court in Brooklyn on Tuesday illuminated another unsavory side of Nxivm. Most participants in the group were not Mr. Raniere’s sex slaves, the lawsuit said, but rather victims of an insidious pyramid scheme who were lured by false scientific claims into paying thousands of dollars for classes.

“They get you to not trust your own decision-making process,” said one former member, Sally Brink, who said she paid $145,000 to take Nxivm classes over the years. “They tell you that you need them to make decisions. You start to doubt everything.”

Ms. Brink was among the 80 plaintiffs who sued Mr. Raniere and 14 other associates of Nxivm (pronounced NEX-ee-um).

The 200-page lawsuit details sprawling allegations of fraud and abuse, including that Nxivm’s leaders drew “from methods used in pyramid schemes” to take people’s money and make it “physically and psychologically difficult, and in some cases impossible, to leave the coercive community.”

Ms. Brink, 47, said in an interview that she was introduced to the group in her late 20s. She was struggling as the new co-owner of a restaurant in a Vermont college town, weighed down by 18-hour days.

Her college roommate recommended turning her life around through Nxivm, pitching it as a class that helped entrepreneurs reach their goals. The roommate told her the program had been developed by a brilliant thinker named Keith Raniere.

Ms. Brink flew to Los Angeles in 2004 for a five-day course, hosted at a home in the Hollywood Hills. At first, she found the teachings to be profound. Her relationships with her employees and her family improved.

More than a decade later, however, Ms. Brink was fighting to escape. The worst moment came in 2017, she said, when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Nxivm associates told her that she had given herself the disease to get her husband’s attention. Instead of spending the money she had raised online for treatment, they urged her to make the ethical decision to die, she added.

Ms. Brink’s allegations of emotional abuse are echoed throughout the lawsuit, which comes seven months after Mr. Raniere, 59, was found guilty of racketeering, sex trafficking and other charges.

Hollywood actors, business executives and professional athletes were among the people who took Nxivm courses, according to former participants. Mr. Raniere’s most fervent followers included Allison Mack, the former “Smallville” actress, and Clare Bronfman, an heiress to the Seagram liquor fortune.

Ms. Mack and Ms. Bronfman were also charged in the racketeering case and pleaded guilty before the trial, along with Nancy Salzman, a former psychiatric nurse who had co-founded the group with Mr. Raniere in Albany, N.Y.

Almost all of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit have hidden their real names, saying their reputations will suffer or they will lose job opportunities if they were to be linked to the group. An estimated 16,000 people have taken Nxivm courses.

Marc Agnifilo, a lawyer for Mr. Raniere, said the lawsuit would allow Mr. Raniere to argue that some former Nxivm members did not provide truthful testimony at his trial.

“As several of the plaintiffs in this lawsuit testified at trial that they were not planning on bringing a lawsuit, Keith’s chances on appeal just increased,” Mr. Agnifilo said in a statement.

Lawyers for Ms. Mack, Ms. Bronfman and Ms. Salzman did not respond to requests for comment.

In painstaking detail, the lawsuit explained how people with college degrees and white-collar jobs got trapped in Mr. Raniere’s system.

Membership in Nxivm was by invitation only, and before the first class, recruits were required to fill out long questionnaires about their views on wealth, religion, children and other topics.

The goal, according to the lawsuit, was to pinpoint their insecurities and weed out skeptics. One former participant said that Nxivm’s recruiters looked for “trust fund babies” and Hollywood actors, and that many Nxivm members had been survivors of sexual assault. Their fears would later be used against them if they tried to leave Nxivm.

Mr. Raniere and Ms. Salzman built a curriculum that they falsely claimed was based in science, the lawsuit alleged. The early courses conditioned students to become emotionally dependent on a system of rewards and punishment. Coaches would break down the students’ self-esteem and scold them for failing to achieve their goals, then lift them up with a positive affirmation.

“That process leaves you wanting more and feeling like they have the answers,” said a former Nxivm member who is participating in the lawsuit.

The group exploited students’ desires for validation, telling them that only Nxivm classes could fix the internal problems hindering their success. If they reached the top of Nxivm, they were told, they could earn income and build a career within the organization.

Yet the leaders continually manipulated the program requirements so that only a fraction of participants ever received income, the lawsuit said. Students were constantly pressured to take more courses and recruit other students.

Many members effectively became indentured servants for Nxivm, working for years without pay and losing their life’s savings, the plaintiffs said….

Nxivm performed illegal human experiments and falsely claimed to cure medical conditions including Tourette’s syndrome and obsessive compulsive disorder, the lawsuit alleged….

The curriculum became increasingly misogynistic over time, according to the plaintiffs. One of the programs taught women that they were sheltered from the consequences of their actions by men, and that they did not deserve equal pay because they had quit their jobs to have children. Women were to be monogamous, while men were to be polygamous, Nxivm taught.

The slow indoctrination laid the foundation for certain women to be groomed as Mr. Raniere’s sexual partners, the lawsuit alleged…..

The sentencings of Mr. Raniere and his associates by a federal judge are still months away. Mr. Raniere could face life in prison.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/29/nyregion/nxivm-lawsuit-keith-raniere.html

SMART Child and Ritual Abuse Newsletter – Issue 142 – September 2018

September 6, 2018 § Leave a comment

SMART Child and Ritual Abuse Newsletter – Issue 142 – September 2018

https://ritualabuse.us/2018/09/issue-142-september-2018/ 

This issue includes information on: Ritual Abuse, Child Abuse Wiki, http://childabusewiki.org/index.php?title=Ritual_Abuse, Ritual Abuse and Mind Control Conference, https://ritualabuse.us, Randy Noblitt, Severe Abuse, Child Abuse Crimes, Neil Brick, Organised Abuse in the UK Conference 2018, Laurie Matthew, Eighteen And Under, Izzy’s Promise, Sarah Nelson, Joseph Lumbasi, Izzy’s Promise, Myth of the Satanic Panic, backlash, sexual harassment, rape, Cult and Ritual Abuse, Satanic ritual killing, sacrifice, Teodora Quispe Ccayllahua, escabroso ritual satánico, Diablo, Larry Nassar, Michigan State, Nxivm Sex-Trafficking Case, Clare Bronfman, pyramid scheme, cult, Keith Raniere, sexual slavery, sex trafficking, Backpage.com, Mike Lacey, John Brunst, pedophiles, darknet, pedophile ring, forced prostitution, religious ritual, Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, demonic spirits, 1000 victims of priest abuse, Roman Catholic priests, systematic cover-up by senior church officials, Vatican, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Edward Ganster, predator priests, I Am a Killer Interviews, Miguel Martinez, Miguel Venegas, Satan, Maryland private school, Key School in Annapolis Maryland, St. Paul’s School, Nuns charged in Smyllum Park child abuse investigation, satanic rituals, Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul, Sisters of Nazareth, St. Joseph’s orphanage, Pope Francis, CIA Mind Control, CIA Secret Cold War, CIA Secret Experiments, Ewen Cameron, Clergy abuse survivors, statute of limitations

Ritual Abuse – Child Abuse Wiki Ritual abuse exists all over the world. There have been reports, journal articles, web pages and criminal convictions of crimes against children and adults. http://childabusewiki.org/index.php?title=Ritual_Abuse

The 2018 Annual Ritual Abuse, Secretive Organizations and Mind Control Conference https://ritualabuse.us/smart-conference/2018-conference/ 

The Credibility of Ritual Abuse Allegations Presenter: Randy Noblitt, PhD Synopsis: To what extent do mental health and other helping professionals believe the stories of ritual abuse survivors? This presentation systematically reviews the empirical research on the credibility of ritual abuse allegations. After presenting the findings there will be a discussion that welcomes the opinions of the attendees regarding their own conclusions including considerations of the community standard, professional ethics, related forensic questions, and advocacy for extreme abuse survivors.

Randy Noblitt, PhD, is a clinical psychologist (licensed in Texas) and professor of clinical psychology at the California School of Professional Psychology at the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University, Los Angeles. In the course of his practice, Randy has treated more than 300 individuals who met the criteria for dissociative identity disorder. He is the principle author of Cult and Ritual Abuse: Its History, Anthropology and Recent Discovery in Contemporary America (Praeger, 1995. 2000), and its third edition, Cult and Ritual Abuse: Narratives, Evidence and Healing Approaches (Praeger, 2014). He is also co-editor and contributing author of the book, Ritual Abuse in the 21st Century: Psychological, Forensic, Social and Political Considerations (Robert Reed, 2008). https://ritualabuse.us/smart-conference/2018-conference/the-credibility-of-ritual-abuse-allegations/

Changes in Awareness of Severe Abuse and Child Abuse Crimes Over Twenty Five Years Presenter: Neil Brick
The awareness of severe abuse and child abuse crimes has changed over the last 25 years. In the early 1990s, severe abuse survivors were often believed and supported. Then a backlash started and severe abuse survivors and their supporters were harassed and attacked. The child abuse survivor movement changed and adapted. Ten years ago, research began again to help expose severe abuse crimes. More recently, first in the UK and Australia and now in the United States, a variety of child abuse, severe abuse, sexual harassment and rape cases are bringing public awareness again to the mainstream media of severe abuse crimes. This presentation will discuss the changes of the last 25 years, with an emphasis on the more recent exposures of organized child abuse crimes and social systems that have been part of the cover up of these crimes.

Neil Brick is a survivor of ritual abuse and mind control. His work continues to educate the public about child abuse, trauma and ritual abuse crimes. His child abuse and ritual abuse newsletter S.M.A.R.T. https://ritualabuse.us has been published for over 22 years. http://neilbrick.com
https://ritualabuse.us/smart-conference/2018-conference/changes-in-awareness-of-severe-abuse-and-child-abuse-crimes-over-twenty-five-years/

Child and Ritual Abuse Conference Helps Educate Survivors and Their Helpers; Speakers included Dr. Randy Noblitt and Neil Brick
Child and Ritual Abuse Conference Speakers Included:
• Dr. Randall Noblitt • Neil Brick
• Jillian Jackson • Manjot Singh Khalsa
• Mike Skinner – Musician
https://www.webwire.com/ViewPressRel.asp?aId=227656

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