Inside the NXIVM Sex Cult’s Secret Plot to Take Over Mexico
08.09.18 4:56 AM ET
PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY THE DAILY BEAST
According to Catherine Oxenberg, the former Dynasty star who helped take down a sex cult, NXIVM leader Keith Raniere was a man on a sick mission. In her new book, Captive: A Mother’s Crusade to Save Her Daughter from a Terrifying Cult, Oxenberg sheds light on a number of Raniere’s more sinister schemes.
After introducing her daughter India to NXIVM’s Executive Success Programs (ESP) in 2011, the actress watched as her bright teenage girl transformed into a shell of her former self, falling under the thumb of Raniere and his cruel machinations. A former NXIVM member by the name of Bonnie Piesse reached out to Oxenberg to inform her that India was involved in a “secret slave-master group” within the cult known as DOS, adding, “She signed a lifetime vow of obedience and gave damaging collateral about herself and most likely you, too. Keith puts them on starvation diets and makes them sign away their possessions, their properties, their bank accounts, and even their future children. They get punished if they don’t do as they’re told.”
Oxenberg says that while gathering information on NXIVM, she discovered that Raniere was set on world domination—and had the Mexican connections to make his dreams a reality. Oxenberg notes that ESP had “garnered a big following in Mexico.” She saw it firsthand when she flew to Mexico City to take an Executive Success Programs course entitled “Family Values”.
“The group was composed of Mexico City’s elite, wealthiest, high-society types,” Oxenberg writes. “The children of four former Presidents of Mexico have been involved with ESP.”
Emiliano Salinas, the son of former Mexican President Carlos Salinas, reportedly led NXIVM’s Mexico branch. According to Executive Success Programs’ website, Salinas was a member of ESP’s Executive Board since 2009 and co-owned ESP centers in Mexico City, Guadalajara and Los Angeles.
“He had already apparently sent out members of his harem to seduce various members of law enforcement and public officials so that he could compromise them.”
In Captive, Oxenberg reveals, “Keith had been playing and positioning his devoted follower Emiliano Salinas as his pawn for years while Emi’s family groomed him to follow in his father’s political footsteps. From what I heard from high-ranking defectors, the supposed plan was to get Emi into office in Mexico’s next Presidential election in the summer of 2018 so that a top-ranking Espian and Nxivm devotee would have power on the world’s political stage. His father, Carlos, would use his Machiavellian methods to ensure his son’s election win, and then Keith would use Emi as his puppet and rule Mexico.”
“Espian men in Mexico had been signing up for the newly rolled out men’s course, SOP (Society of Protectors) in droves,” she continues. “It was promoted as the counterpart to that misogynistic course I’d unwittingly hosted less than a year earlier, Jness. While the men thought that they were being trained to become honorable, noble protectors of humanity, they were actually being molded to serve as mindless soldiers in Keith’s perverse army—the sole goal of which was to protect Vanguard [Raniere] and his harem.”
“It sounds very Austin Powers,” Oxenberg told the Daily Beast during an interview this week, reflecting on Raniere’s disturbing designs. “I know, it’s crazy! But it seems to me that he really might have had this world domination plan. He had already apparently sent out members of his harem to seduce various members of law enforcement and public officials so that he could compromise them. Because I’ve heard stories about who those people are. So I think all along, this was his plan.”
When Oxenberg began working to publicly expose NXIVM, she found herself on the wrong side of Raniere’s Mexican foot soldiers. “That October,” she writes, “I received threatening letters from a Nxivm lawyer and a state attorney general in Mexico, accusing me of numerous felonies, including fraud and extortion.” Oxenberg later learned from court documents that the legal letters had been orchestrated by Keith Raniere and Seagram’s heiress Clare Bronfman, who allegedly helped bankroll the cult to the tune of tens of millions. She explained to The Daily Beast that, “What they must have done is dispatch this task to NXIVM Mexico, because there was no lawyer in the United States who would have done this.”
At one point in the book, Oxenberg recalls being asked by a Mexican TV reporter not to publicly name him before their interview aired “or I’ll be killed.”
“He wasn’t joking,” Oxenberg insists. “Not only was he referencing the cult’s potential power in Mexico, because it was populated with so many of the country’s rich, famous, and most elite citizens, but he was also acknowledging the danger that one of those citizens was Emiliano Salinas. His father, Carlos, the most feared man in the country, would do anything for his son.”
Raniere eventually fled to Mexico, where he was arrested in late March. “Keith was deported instead of extradited, which would have been the proper protocol,” Oxenberg details in Captive. “There was a worry that the Salinas family would step in and use their government ties to block extradition if they caught wind of it.”
Now that the cult’s leader is facing fifteen years to life, Emiliano Salinas has reportedly cut ties with NXIVM and ESP.