NXIVM Cofounder Keith Raniere Sentenced to 120 Years in Prison for Sex Cult
Behind bars. Keith Raniere, the cofounder of NXIVM, was sentenced to 120 years in prison by a federal court in New York on Tuesday, October 27.
The businessman, 60, was convicted by a federal jury in June 2019 of racketeering, racketeering conspiracy, sex trafficking, attempted sex trafficking, sex trafficking conspiracy, forced labor conspiracy and wire fraud conspiracy, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice.
“The 120-year sentence imposed on Keith Raniere today is a measure of his appalling crimes committed over a decade,” the Acting United States Attorney Seth D. DuCharme said. “Raniere exploited and abused his victims emotionally, physically and sexually for his personal gratification. It is my hope that today’s sentence brings closure to the victims and their families.”
Ahead of his sentencing hearing, Raniere spoke out about his involvement in NXIVM — which prosecutors have labeled a sex cult — and claimed he is “innocent” of all crimes.
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“You know, one of the things that is most important in our country is the justice system,” he told NBC News earlier this month during an interview from prison. “And although, you know, people can hate me and, do, and think I’m an odious type of a character, you know, awful actually. Both the devil and a saint should be able to get the exact same treatment under our justice system.”
The trials of NXIVM's members are set to be documented in season 2 of HBO's documentary series The Vow. During the season 1 finale, which aired on October 18, Raniere gave a statement from prison.
“There are many ways of presenting a documentary," he said during the finale. "Your side is only the very top layer. And depending on what you’re willing to present as the truth, it can go very deep. So, talk to me."
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