BOP transfer of Keith Raniere comes in the midst of FBI evidence-tampering claims

NXIVM founder Keith Raniere claims the BOP is trying to “silence” him for going public with his evidence tampering claim against the FBI in his 2019 conviction.

The former NXIVM leader Keith Raniere’s evidence-tampering claim is in a motion before U.S. District Court Judge Nicholas Garaufis, who has delayed ruling on it until the appeal has been ruled on, classifying the alleged government crime as not a “substantial” issue. Meanwhile, the damning evidence of government malfeasance, in the form of evidence manipulation and perjury, contained in the motion has elicited several retaliatory responses from the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), the latest being his alleged impending transfer to another prison facility.

The convicted leader has expressed his “deep concern” for his physical well-being after learning of his impending transfer from Tucson – which housed offenders of crimes similar to those committed by Raniere – to another BOP facility. “Because of the high-profile nature of my case, and the nature of my crimes of conviction, I believe this transfer will expose me to the likelihood of being assaulted or killed by other prisoners,” Raniere had said in an affidavit made available by his attorneys.

The convicted sex offender filed a lawsuit with his lawyers claiming he was attacked by a fellow inmate and sex offender, which he was wrongly punished for by Tucson prison officials. Raniere was in the dining hall at USP Tucson in Arizona at 6:50 a.m. “when he was assaulted by inmate Maurice Withers with a closed fist on Mr. Raniere’s head and face.” His attorneys documented it in a suit against the Department of Justice and the Bureau of Prisons.

The amended complaint filed in September showed Raniere had a black eye, swelling, nausea, and dizziness for more than a week after the alleged attack by a fellow inmate. And that he requested an ice pack to treat the swelling and pain, which was allegedly turned down.

Even though Mr. Raniere did not fight back during the incident in the dining hall, he was “given a disciplinary ticket for fighting” and placed in the prison’s Special Housing Unit, according to court papers.

Raniere claims prison officials have escalated their campaign against him by unnecessarily segregating him from the general population of inmates and keeping him in the SHU, where he’s only allowed limited access to phone calls and only an hour a day of outdoor activity, according to filing in a federal court in Arizona in September. According to Raniere’s attorney, he is still being held in the SHU, despite having been cleared to return to the general population well over a month ago, is being threatened to be transferred, not for safety reasons but because of the facility’s alleged difficulty in accommodating a weekly legal call and visit.

By all indications, it appears USP Tucson is getting rid of Raniere. And it could be soon, maybe as soon as January. Though Raniere did not say himself where his next destination will likely be, you wouldn’t be called a genius for saying he will end up in a maximum security prison. And Raniere is perhaps well aware of the usual treatment, sometimes called “diesel therapy,” when prisoners are transferred between BOP facilities – most likely by road and with a bus. For several weeks, Raniere will likely travel in hellish conditions – shackled at the feet, hands, and belly.

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