Founder of the sex cult group NXIVM plotted to install a female “lieutenant” into a top political office, according to one of his members’ court testimony.
Lauren Salzman, a member of leader Keith Raniere’s inner circle known as DOS, was tasked with recruiting “people of power and influence” into NXIVM, she said to a Brooklyn court on Monday.
Raniere hoped “that we might have a DOS candidate in a high-level political office,” Salzman said, adding that the prospective candidate would have to be “highly collateralized,” meaning NXIVM would have needed blackmail material on her to control her.
Additionally, Salzman testified that Raniere wanted to expand the New York-based sex cult into a nationwide enterprise, and have new members initially use masks and pseudonyms a la Eyes Wide Shut to make it more accessible.
“I think he envisioned it would have thousands or almost a million people,” Salzman said. “He was pushing me specifically to have 100” slaves.
It’s no secret as to which political party Raniere’s candidate would have been.
Several high-profile members of NXIVM, such as billionaire heiress Clare Bronfman, donated thousands to Hillary Clinton in 2007, and have ties to 2020 Democrat presidential candidate Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.
Additionally, Salzman confirmed that the sex cult itself illegally raised donations for Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential run.
Lauren Salzman pleaded guilty to enslaving women for the group, while her mother Nancy Salzman pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy.
The trial against Raniere began earlier this month, where he’s pleaded not guilty to a variety of felony charges including racketeering conspiracy, identity theft, extortion, forced labor, money laundering, wire fraud and sex trafficking.