Federal informant Lawrence Ray was arrested by the FBI Tuesday on charges including sex trafficking.
According to the indictment, Lawrence Ray “targeted a group of college students and others for indoctrination and criminal exploitation.” Ray allegedly sought out young women at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville where his daughter attended school. He is accused of both physically and sexually manipulating and abusing his victims over the course of the last decade.
Ray is believed to have earned the trust of his daughter’s fellow students, only to interrogate them using methods including sleep deprivation, psychological and sexual humiliation, verbal abuse, threats of physical violence, and threats of criminal legal action. He is also accused of using false accusations and nude pictures to blackmail young women into prostitution. Federal prosecutors further allege that Ray conspired with others and laundered roughly $1 million he earned from his victims.
On Tuesday, U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said that Ray “subjected the victims to almost unspeakable abuse.” At the same press conference, Assistant FBI Director William Sweeney described Ray’s conduct as “outrageous,” saying, “it makes me angry. If it doesn’t make you angry, you don’t have a soul.”
In a statement to News 4, Sarah Lawrence College responded to the news, saying:
Sarah Lawrence College has just learned of the indictment of a former parent in the Southern District of New York. The charges contained in the indictment are serious, wide-ranging, disturbing, and upsetting. As always the safety and well-being of our students and alumni is a priority for the College.
Ray is best known for aiding efforts to take down former NYPD commissioner Bernie Kerik for accepting corporate bribes and tax evasion. Kerik responded to news of the arrest with a statement of his own:
I haven’t spoken to Larry Ray in over 19 years. I only wish that the FBI and the Justice Department realized what a con-man he was prior to making him their superstar witness against me.
In their zeal to destroy me and my family, they ignored his lies, deceit, and inconsistencies. Hopefully, this indictment will be the end of his reign of terror on everyone he has conned, manipulated, or deceived, and the children he has hurt.
Ray now faces numerous charges, “including extortion, extortion conspiracy, sex trafficking, forced labor, forced labor trafficking, forced labor conspiracy, use of interstate commerce to promote unlawful activity and money laundering.” He will face life in prison if convicted.