Lawrence Ray, the deranged leader of a Sarah Lawrence College sex cult, was found guilty on all counts Wednesday and faces up to life in prison for physical, mental and sexual abuse of a group of wayward college studentss, the New York Daily News reports. It took the jury only a half day to convict Ray, 62, of 15 counts, including sex trafficking, racketeering conspiracy and extortion tied to his 10-year reign atop “The Ray Family,” preying on the vulnerable young friends of his daughter Talia at the bucolic Bronxville, N.Y., college. Testimony and evidence, including home videos shot by Ray himself, showed how he systematically broke down his victims with interrogations and beatings until he controlled every aspect of their lives.
At Ray’s side were his trusted lieutenant, Isabella Pollok, who was also indicted and will be tried later this year, and his daughter, an unindicted co-conspirator in Ray’s extortion plots. Santos Rosario, 30, testified that he finally snapped out of Ray’s spell after meeting with prosecutors following the cult leader’s arrest in 2020. “I remember thinking ... that I wouldn’t ever treat anyone the way he was treating me,” Rosario said. “And that kind of led to the thought that maybe, just maybe, I was wrong about Larry. And that it was okay to think that.” Twice during the trial, Ray was whisked out of Manhattan federal court after apparently suffering seizures at the defense table. The strange episodes echoed testimony from followers who said they were overwhelmed by Ray’s constant claims his health was failing.