Suneel Chakravorty, a Harvard educated mathematician, describes what he finds not credible about the FBI’s handling and presentation of the evidence in the Keith Raniere Trial.
See the whole interview and read the transcript below.
“So the evidence was seized in this unusual way, where the FBI seemed to know what they were looking for.
They went into this house, went upstairs, bypassed a bunch of things on the desk, when underneath the desk, grabbed the camera, ignored a bunch of things around the desk, went to the bookshelf and grabbed the hard drive.
Right. So they seem to prioritize those items, which were not part of the search warrant.
They’re just they weren’t part of DOS or any of their alleged charges.
Then these things goes evidence control. And the discovery of the relevance of these things is 11 months later, 11 months later, accidental discovery, but two FBI agents checked out this evidence the camera and the camera card for a period of 24 days.
And there’s two things that are odd with this:
One is they’re not forensic examiners and protocol is that it first needs to go to a forensic examiner to be preserved. Right.
The second thing is this evidence had no relevance to anything else except for this these alleged photographs.
So month to month before this accident discovery. FBI agents took these items out, we’re not permitted to even review them. They were in the chain of custody, we’re going to review these things. So that’s that’s improper.
Number two, while it was in the hands of the lead case, Agent the second time his name was Michael Lever. And we know this from the chain of custody.
Somebody accesses the camera card, they didn’t use the protocols to protect it. And so dates were overwritten. And we can say everything that was done to it. We know at least for the dates were overwritten for the last access date.
So the fact that they went and made this Beeline and they ignored a bunch of other things that they would later come back to collect, to me suggests that they prioritize getting those two items. And that in itself is not so problematic.
Often you have a confidential informant that tells you, you know, in advance but the search warrant had nothing to do with what these two items were important for. And it’s just quite a coincidence to me that the first two items seized would be the ones that were later involved in an accidental discovery that, in the words of the lead prosecutor where it can Moira Penza changed the landscape of the case dramatically, you know, so that, to me suggests in short summon premeditation, when I went to the trolley became more disturbing, because I saw what I believe to be very kind of errands things the government was doing, but nothing. Nothing was tangible to me.
Until the senior examiner Booth said that thing that it’s like if I told you a Microsoft Word document is hard to change, like your your, your jaw would drop, and my jaw dropped and I looked around me and no one else saw that because they’re not technical people.
I was like, “Oh my gosh, this guy is saying he got evidence in an unsealed baggie. And he’s saying that’s normal!”
Yeah, it’s not.
It’s not possible to me. That someone who’s been in the FBI for 13 years as a senior forensic examiner, innocently didn’t know that exif data is so easy to change.
I can teach you in about 30 seconds.
I believe the senior examiner Brian booth lied.
And interestingly, the other examiner who was examining another piece of evidence the camera card, his name is Steven Flatly. He, five weeks into the trial, could have been called at any point in time, and was scurried off to Ghana.
During one of the most high profile trials of his career, the US first veneering international media, multiple documentaries, and he has to go to Ghana while he’s holding the most important second most important is the lenses and the camera card.
And we recently discovered through repair legal that one of his prior testimony, and it’s not like one snippet, it’s dozens of pages: He’s on record saying that metadata is unreliable, and therefore we don’t only rely on that but the FBI we can’t.
So that’s a very odd to me that it just so happened that the guy they screened out of the country had a completely opposite view of the metadata.”