January 18, 2019

Edgar Bronfman Sr.’s Daughter Charged in Running Alleged Sex Cult

Clare Bronfman, the daughter of the late Edgar Bronfman Sr. and an heiress to the Seagram empire, was arrested on July 24 for allegedly running a sex cult where women would allegedly be branded as “slaves.”

Bronfman is among several defendants being charged with an assortment of crimes related to NXIVM, which billed itself as a “self-improvement” company. Bronfman herself is accused of funding and aiding Keith Raniere, NXVIM’s founder, to blackmail women into becoming members of the alleged sex cult through techniques like identity theft.

Prosecutors allege that women in NXVIM were forced to be branded with Raniere’s initials and be “slaves” to masters in the cult, which would involve sexual activity.

Bronfman and the other defendants have denied any wrongdoing.

“NXIVM was not a criminal enterprise but instead was an organization that helped thousands of people,” Bronfman’s attorney, Susan Necheles, said in a statement. “The charges against Clare are the result of government overreaching and charging an individual with crimes just because the government disagrees with some beliefs taught by NXIVM and held by Clare.”