Accused NXIVM sex cult leader Keith Raniere tried to push abortion as a great way to lose weight, said a witness at his federal trial on Tuesday.
The woman has been identified as Daniela, according to The New York Post. She said that the defendant got her pregnant in 2006. According to her, Raniere said (as if they’d previously discussed it) that she’d have an abortion if she was expecting. Daniela said got she got a pill during the procedure, but Raniere never visited her while she was recovering.
“A few days after, we were on a walk,” she said. “He told me that this was a great opportunity to lose weight and get fit. He said there are Olympic athletes who get pregnant as part of their training just to get abortions.”
As she described it, weight-loss was a big theme in their relationship. Daniela claimed on the stand last week that Raniere installed a camera facing the refrigerator in the home where he lived with three other women (this included her older sister). He would oink when he saw them go to the fridge, and he pushed Daniela to lose weight because “fat” women disrupted his “energy,” according to her testimony. This allegedly went as far as him tell her to weigh 155 pounds so they could have sex when she turned 18.
Daniela also testified before that Raniere nicknamed her “Norelco,” for reasons better left unsaid.
Raniere stands trial for a slew of charges including racketeering conspiracy, sexual exploitation of a child, wire fraud conspiracy, and attempted sex trafficking. The defendant allegedly ran a sex cult as part of his group NXIVM. His defense denies that he broke the law, and instead said that the alleged relationships were consensual.
[Screengrab via YouTube]