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NXIVM leader appears in federal court

Keith Raniere Keith Raniere | Photo: NXIVM.

March 27, 2018 07:08 PM

The arrest of NXIVM leader Keith Raniere for sex trafficking has made international news.

Raniere appeared in federal court on Tuesday, where he waived his right to an extradition hearing. He was being extradited to Brooklyn, where charges will be filed.

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Here in the Capital Region, the FBI was on Oregon Trail in Halfmoon, at a home of a woman connected to the secretive group.

The criminal complaint against Raniere details grooming women sexually, branding their skin and how the group and a super-secret inner group works.

Two women who used to be members of the group tell NewsChannel 13 they can't believe this arrest and they're grateful, relieved and feel vindicated.     

The FBI was taking evidence out of the home in Halfmoon of Nancy Salzman, president of NXIVM.

Group leader Keith Raniere is facing charges of sex trafficking. He was in federal court in Texas on Tuesday after being arrested in Mexico.

NXIVM has many locations around the Capital Region, with centers around the country and in Canada, Central America and Mexico.

Federal court papers outline a secret group with different ranks marked by colored sashes. 

Documents show that Raniere, known as Vanguard within the group, maintained a rotating group of 15 to 20 women for sex.

Court documents also detail a smaller, all-female group within NXIVM, called DOS, that has masters and slaves -- some of whom were sexually groomed for Raniere. Many of them were branded with his initials with a cauterizing pen.

NewsChannel 13 talked to one woman who said that after years of fighting this group at great personal and financial cost, she now feels immense relief and freedom with this arrest.     

Barbara Bouchey is the highest-ranking member to leave the group.

"I'm just grateful that the abuse will finally stop. It's been really traumatic for many of us. I'm just very grateful that this day has come. The wheels of justice have been slow, but truth has prevailed and will continue to and I hope he's held accountable," said Bouchey.

The other woman, also a former member, said she's relieved the world is finally taking notice of somebody so dangerous.

NewsChannel 13 also went to the NXIVM offices on New Karner Road in Colonie. There were people inside, but they locked the door and one woman indicated they did not want to talk to us.


More information:
Department of Justice paperwork on Keith Rainere and NXIVM

Credits

WNYT Staff

Copyright 2018 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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