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NXIVM leader Keith Raniere's attorneys renew motion for bail

November 15, 2018 12:11 AM

ALBANY - NXIVM leader Keith Rainere's attorneys are renewing their motion for his release. Raniere along with several women associated with the organization are facing sex trafficking and other charges.

One of his attorneys, Paul DerOhannesian, said the renewed motion explains who will pay Raniere's $1 million bond, and why he shouldn't be considered a flight risk.

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If the judge grants bail for Raniere, he would be held under house arrest in Clifton Park until the trial in March. DerOhannesian said he believes the prosecution doesn't have enough evidence to convict Raniere of sex trafficking.

"There are certainly I think weaknesses now that we are going to point out in this case,” DerOhannesian said.

DerOhannesian said Raniere's circumstances are far from a typical sex trafficking scenario.

"When you look at the basis of what we feel that is a legally adventuresome theory where they are trying to say there was not mutually consenting relationships between adults,” DerOhannesian said. “That's really what the sex trafficking case is about and that's what we address in the bail motion."

The defense's renewed motion includes information about three people who are willing to put up their properties to pay Raniere's bond.

Those names have been redacted, and DerOhannesian said a number of additional unnamed people would also sign the bond.

“Having so many people that would do that we think enhances the value of his release,” DerOhannesian said. “And the reality is his release is no different from many other defendants every day as well as in this case where he would be under house arrest, monitored by GPS, his activity very limited."

If the judge grants his release, Raniere also wouldn't be able to communicate with anyone by phone or in person unless his attorneys are present. He wouldn't have access to the internet, except for viewing evidence in this case, and he would have to surrender his passport.

But DerOhannesian said Raniere was never really a flight risk, despite being arrested in Mexico in March.

DerOhannesian said Raniere was there visiting his three-month-old son and the child's mother.

"He was not hiding, he was open he was available and that the explanation that was given by the prosecutors lacked very important factual information,” DerOhannesian said.

DerOhannesian said Raniere doesn't have the money to flee the country. He also said Raniere cares deeply for the people co-signing for his bail, and would not put them at risk financially.

DerOhanessian said he's planning to file another motion in relation to the sex trafficking charge on Friday, but he declined to give much more detail.

Stay with NewsChannel 13 for the latest on the NXIVM proceedings.

Credits

Emily Burkhard

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

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