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Nxivm judge decides not to release juror names to the media: Here’s why

[Judge Nicholas Garaufis, Nxivm leader Keith Raniere]

Citing concerns for their security, Judge Nicholas Garaufis has opted not to release the names of the jurors in the Nxivm trial. The New York Daily News had filed a request with the court that the names be released, and it was joined by other press organizations, including the New York Times.

But Judge Garaufis turned it down, saying, “Being a juror publicly identified with this case is a far greater burden than being publicly identified with a typical criminal trial. Unsurprisingly, several jurors privately asked the court not to release their names even after the trial concluded.”

Jurors, of course, are free to identify themselves or to approach news organizations on their own.

But it’s understandable why they wouldn’t do so, beyond the usual concerns about privacy. There was testimony during the trial about efforts by Nxivm to obtain private financial information on their perceived enemies. On May 15, former Nxivm member Mark Vicente testified that when he decided to leave the group, “I had an understanding of the way the organization worked and the resources, and I believed my life is now in danger.”

At one point, I believe during a pre-trial hearing, Judge Garaufis stated that although jurors have the right to speak to the press when a trial is concluded, he feels it’s better if they just go on with their lives. After this most unusual case, it looks like that’s exactly what these jurors intend to do.



Posted by Tony Ortega on July 6, 2019 at 04:45

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Tony Ortega is a journalist who was formerly the editor of The Village Voice. He’s written about Scientology since 1995, and in May 2015 released a book about Scientology’s harassment of Paulette Cooper titled ‘The Unbreakable Miss Lovely,’ and more recently a compilation of his stories, ‘Battlefield Scientology.’ He continues to monitor breaking developments in the Scientology world, as well as other subjects at The Underground Bunker. You can reach him by sending him a message at tonyo94 AT (Drop him a line if you’d like to get an e-mail whenever a new story is posted.)


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