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Judge denies bail for NXIVM founder

FILE- In this April 13, 2018 courtroom sketch Keith Raniere, second from right, leader of the secretive group NXIVM, attends a court hearing in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (Elizabeth Williams via AP, File)

A federal judge in New York has denied bail for a self-help group founder in his sex-trafficking case after questions were raised about an heiress who has bankrolled him.

Posted: Jun. 12, 2018 5:05 PM

NEW YORK (AP) - A federal judge in New York has denied bail for a self-help group founder in his sex-trafficking case after questions were raised about an heiress who has bankrolled him.

Lawyers for Keith Raniere had sought his release on Tuesday on $10 million bond, but the judge sided with prosecutors who argued he could flee with the help of benefactors known to include Clare Bronfman, an heiress to the Seagram's liquor fortune.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Moira Penza labeled a person fitting the description of Bronfman as a co-conspirator in the case.

There was no immediate response on Tuesday to a message left with a lawyer for Bronfman, who hasn't been charged.

Raniere has denied charges he formed a secret society within NXIVM that branded victims with his initials.

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