The “missing” – and now somewhat redacted – Memorandum-of-Law has finally shown up on PACER. It even has a new Document Number: i.e., 580 instead of 575.
Although it’s still unclear whether the original unredacted filing was done by mistake – or to intimidate some of the potential witnesses against Keith Raniere – the filing still does not address the gaping hole in Raniere’s argument that he was entitled to an expectation of privacy at 8 Hale Drive.
Basically, Raniere’s claim boils down to these four assertions (No tangible evidence was introduced to back up any of these assertions):
(1) After the property was purchased by Executive Housing & Properties, Inc. in 2004, Raniere renovated it (There is no explanation offered as to how a man with no assets and no income could afford to pay for any renovations – and even Raniere has never claimed to have any building trades skills: e.g., carpentry, electrical, plumbing, etc.).
(2) Raniere engaged in sexual activity at 8 Hale Drive.
(3) Raniere used 8 Hale Drive as his domicile at various times over the past several years.
(4) Raniere kept his books, clothing and other personal property at 8 Hale Drive.
Raniere offers no explanation as to why he should have any rights with respect to a property that is owned by a corporation in which he has no ownership interest – and to which he has no known association.
Nor does he address the fact that the corporation in question – Executive Housing & Properties, Inc. – was dissolved almost 10 years ago.
The Memorandum-Of-Law does raise several interesting questions that the prosecution will need to address – and resolve – if it hopes to be able to introduce the photographs of Jane Doe 2 at Raniere’s upcoming trial.
These include the following:
(1) Were the photographs of Jane Doe 2 included in the original Search And Seizure Warrant?
The original Search and Seizure Warrant for 8 Hale Drive was signed by United States Magistrate Judge Daniel J. Stewart of the Northern District of New York on March 26, 2018.
It permitted federal agents to search the 8 Hale Drive premises “including any locked and closed containers and closed items at that location”.
It also limited the things that could be seized to “evidence, fruits and instrumentalities of certain listed crimes occurring (on) or after January 1, 2015”.
The photographs of Jane Doe 2 were taken sometime in 2005.
When the FBI searched the hard-drive that is at issue, it did not limit its search to items that were created on or after January 1, 2015.
Had it done so, it may not have discovered the photographs of Jane Doe 2.
(2) Why did the government fail to obtain an additional search warrant for the electronic devices that were seized at 8 Hale Drive?
On October 24, 2018, the government obtained an additional search warrant with respect to the electronic devices that had been seized at Nancy Salzman’s former house at 7 Oregon Trail.
But it did not do the same with respect to the electronic devices that had been seized from the property at 8 Hale Drive.
Why did the government feel the need to obtain an additional search warrant regarding the electronic devices it seized at 7 Oregon Trail but not do the same with respect to the electronic devices it seized at 8 Hale Drive?
(3) Are the photographs of Jane Doe 21 related to the NXIVM/ESP criminal enterprise?
The defense successfully moved to have the possession of child pornography charge against Raniere – which was added via the second superseding indictment – dismissed and severed from the current case.
One of the arguments the defense raised in its motion was that “there is no role that these unreviewed photographs could possibly have in the affairs of the enterprise.”
Although the court granted the motion to dismiss and sever, it did so on the basis that the alleged child pornography possession did not occur in the Eastern District of New York.
Thus, the issue of whether the charge has any link to the NXIVM/ESP criminal enterprise was not addressed by the court.
One other piece of information that was in the Memorandum-Of-Law – and that Frank Report has previously reported on – is that there were 12 subfolders in the “Studies” subfolder on the backup hard-drive.
Each of those 12 subfolders contained “numerous sexually explicit photographs” of different women with whom Raniere had sexual relationships.
All of the photographs were taken sometime in 2005.
Three of the subfolders contained photographs of Jane Doe 2, Lauren Salzman and Kathy Russell.
Which, of course, leaves us wondering as to the names of the nine women whose “sexually explicit photographs” were in the other subfolders.
I wonder who that might that have been?
Any guesses, Frank Report readers?