Jewish Seagram heiress Bronfman pleads guilty to involvement in ‘sex cult’

By taking a plea deal, Bronfman does not have to go on trial with the alleged cult leader in May.

By JOSEFIN DOLSTEN/JTA
April 24, 2019 04:24
1 minute read.
Clare Bronfman, an heiress of the Seagram's liquor empire, arrives in a Brooklyn Federal Courthouse

Clare Bronfman, an heiress of the Seagram's liquor empire, arrives at the Brooklyn Federal Courthouse, for her trail regarding sex trafficking and racketeering related to the Nxivm cult in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., January 9, 2019.. (photo credit: BRENDAN MCDERMID/REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later



NEW YORK  — Seagram heiress Clare Bronfman pleaded guilty to involvement in a self-help organization that has been accused of being a sex cult.

Bronfman, 40, admitted Friday in a federal court in Brooklyn to harboring an undocumented immigrant for financial gain and committing credit card fraud on behalf of Keith Raniere, the leader of the Nxivm group. Prosecutors say some members of the group were forced to have sex with Raniere and were branded with his initials.



By taking a plea deal, Bronfman does not have to go on trial with the alleged cult leader in May. She faces more than two years in prison and has to forfeit $6 million.



In her testimony, she apologized for misusing her family’s wealth.



“Your honor, I was afforded a great gift by my grandfather and father,” she said. “With the gift comes immense privilege and, more importantly, tremendous responsibility. It does not come with an ability to break the law.”



Her late father, Edgar Bronfman Sr., was a scion and longtime head of the Seagram’s Company, at one point the largest distiller of alcoholic beverages in the world. Bronfman was president of the World Jewish Congress for many years and was a major supporter of an array of Jewish causes, including the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, where he was a board member, and JTA’s partner site MyJewishLearning, which he founded in 2003.



The Bronfman family “is perhaps the single largest force in the Jewish charitable world,” Nathaniel Popper once wrote in the Forward.



Bronfman died in 2013 at age 84.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Definition of Arabic numerals from Wikipedia
May 21, 2019
Most Americans don't want Arabic numerals taught in U.S. schools

By TZVI JOFFRE