Keith Raniere, a so-called self-help guru who ran a sex cult that enslaved women, has been found guilty of all charges.
Raniere, 58, who oversaw a “slave and master” system in his group, called Nxivm was convicted by a jury after a six-week trial in Brooklyn, New York.
He was convicted of all counts against him, including racketeering, sex trafficking, and child pornography.
Raniere, who pleaded not guilty to all charges, is facing life in prison.
During the trial, the court heard how female recruits in the group were branded with his initials and coerced into having sex with Raniere.
Raniere maintained that Nxivm (pronounced nexium) was a self-improvement organization, but investigators found it was a sex-trafficking operation disguised as a mentoring group.
Recruits were told it was an all-female group and were asked to hand over compromising materials that were later used to blackmail them, prosecutors said.
Raniere was arrested by the FBI in Mexico last year. His defense team claimed the sexual relationships were consensual.
Raniere, the court heard, ran a secret society within Nxivm called DOS.
As the “grandmaster” of DOS, he was a “predator” who exploited and blackmailed women, including a 15-year-old girl, prosecutors alleged.
Raniere forced his “slaves” to give him nude photos of themselves and other compromising materials, telling them they would be made public if they disobeyed him, the court heard.
Every August, Nxivm members – called “Nixians” – would dole out $2,000 (£1,575) or more to gather in Silver Bay, New York to celebrate Raniere’s birthday week, according to court documents.
When the verdict was read outside court, former members of Nxivm gave the prosecution team a round of applause.
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