Clare Bronfman’s attorneys have, once again, tried to sneak in an embarrassing filing on a Friday afternoon that they probably hoped would not be picked up by the media at all – or that would be buried in the traditionally slow news/no news cycle of the weekend. Apparently, they haven’t entirely figured out how this newfangled internet thing works just yet.
While yesterday’s filing certainly qualifies as embarrassing, several other adjectives could also be used to describe it: desperate, foolhardy, pathetic and pitiful are ones that quickly come to mind. And I’m sure that readers of Frank Report will have their own special ones.
Although it took one of Clare’s attorneys 7-pages to detail WHAT she wanted Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis to do – and WHY he should do so – the letter motion that was filed yesterday basically comes down to this: our client, Cruella Bronfman, is tired of being told what she can and can’t do, where she can and can’t go, and, most of all, with whom she can and can’t communicate.
The missive begins by recounting the conditions that Clare had to meet in order to avoid being incarcerated until trial like Keith Alan Raniere, the leader of the sex slaver cult that she financed and managed. Those conditions are as follows:
- “Ms. Bronfman’s appearance is secured by a $100 million bond, signed by two close family members, and by $50 million in assets, including $8 million of US real estate owned by her sister.
- Ms. Bronfman is confined to her home 24 hours a day, with the exception of attorney visits and three 90-minute breaks per week coordinated with Pretrial Services.
- Ms. Bronfman may not directly or indirectly associate or have contact with, except in the presence of her attorneys, current or former employees, or independent contractors, of or for NXIVM, including any and all of the related entities; current or former members of DOS, or with any individual who [i]s currently or was formerly on the stripe path, subject to reasonable exceptions agreed upon by the parties.”
It is the last provision of Clare’s bail conditions – the “no contact” provision – that her attorneys are asking the judge to change. And they would like him to rescind it entirely – or to at least substantially modify it –so that Clare can communicate with members and ex-members of NXIVM and members and ex-members of DOS.
To buttress their argument that Clare should be able to contact her former NXIVM and DOS cronies, her attorneys point out that Clare is currently 39 years old – and that her association with NXIVM began when she was approximately 23. But they leave out the fact that even on a good day, she looks at least 60 years old – and that she is the one who has chosen to isolate her life to a cult where, as the Director of Operations and de facto second-in-command, she can order people to do whatever she wants them to do.
Her attorneys go on to argue that Clare’s right to “expressive association” means that she should be allowed to “…associate with others in pursuit of a wide variety of political, social, economic, educational, religious, and cultural ends”. This apparently includes the enslavement of women, extortion, forced labor, human trafficking, identity theft, illegal entry, money laundering, sex trafficking, and wire fraud – which are just some of the crimes that Clare and her cronies have been charged with thus far in the pending criminal case against them.
Clare’s attorneys then argue that her current bail conditions infringe upon her right to “intimate association” – which they claim affords her the “choice to enter into and maintain certain intimate human relationships [without] undue intrusion by the State.”
Totally avoiding the question of whether Clare actually has the ability to establish an “intimate human relationship,” her attorneys go on to argue that “Ms. Bronfman has been involved with NXIVM for 16 years, and as we previously explained to the Court, many of Ms. Bronfman’s closest friends are affiliated with NXIVM. The no-contact provision effectively bars her from communicating with these individuals during the incredibly stressful and isolating experience of criminal prosecution”.
Next, Clare’s attorneys throw in a new “shiny object” to divert attention away from the fact that Clare Bronfman has been one of the leaders of a crime syndicate for more than a decade by putting forth the name of Neil Glazer, an attorney who “…purportedly (represents) several anonymous former NXIVM members who claim to have been ‘terrorized’ by litigation financed by Ms. Bronfman.” They then go on to promise that Clare will not directly contact any of these former NXIVM members – a promise that is both cynical and meaningless since there is no reason to believe that Clare’s lawyers even know the names of any of Mr. Glazer’s supposed clients.
But, now comes the fun part – and the part that may really rile up Judge Garaufis. “If the government wants to prevent Ms. Bronfman from contacting its potential witnesses, the government should provide a list of these witnesses so that the no-contact provision can be more narrowly tailored”. Do Clare’s attorneys really believe that the judge is going to order the prosecution to provide Clare’s attorneys with what would amount to a “Target List”?
And just to complete this circle of incredulity, Clare’s lawyers offer up yet another admonition to the judge: “It is no answer to say that Ms. Bronfman can request the government’s consent to contact specific individuals… Ms. Bronfman has serious concerns that identifying the individuals she wants to associate with will expose them to unwanted attention from the government and hostility from third parties… Ms. Bronfman should not be required to expose her friends and acquaintances to this sort of scrutiny in order to communicate with them.”
I obviously have no way of knowing how Judge Garaufis will respond to this 7-page whine-and-rant motion by Clare’s attorneys. But I can think of one solution that will resolve all the issues they have raised – and that will still protect all those victims who are justifiably afraid of the havoc and terror that Clare could cause if she’s allowed to hook-up with her powerful NXIVM friends: just rescind Clare’s bail – and stick her in the Metropolitan Detention Center. That will give her plenty of opportunities for “expressive associations” and numerous opportunities for “intimate associations”. Just ask Vanguard.
But, seriously, if you want to understand the true absurdity of this motion, just substitute the name of any well-known crime figure for that of Clare Bronfman – and see how it sounds. Like John Gotti or Whitey Bulger or El Chapo Guzman. Would you want any of those guys communicating with their former associates while potential witnesses against them were anxiously awaiting the opportunity to testify against them?