A man who put a group of college students through sexual, psychological, and physical abuse after moving into his daughter's dorm room in Westchester County will spend the rest of his life in prison.
Larry Ray, also known as Lawrence Grecco, was sentenced to 60 years in prison on Friday, Jan. 20 for leading a sex cult out of Sarah Lawrence College located near the border of Bronxville and Yonkers, according to Damian Williams, the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York.
Starting around 2010, Ray, a 63-year-old resident of Piscataway, New Jersey, moved into the co-ed dorm of his daughter after being released from prison and would subject victims to sexual and psychological abuse through numerous tactics, including:
- Sleep deprivation;
- Psychological and sexual humiliation;
- Verbal abuse;
- Threats of physical violence;
- Physical violence;
- Threats of criminal legal action;
- Alienating victims from their families;
- Exploiting mental health vulnerabilities of victims.
Ray would use these abusive methods to force his victims to falsely confess to causing damages to him and his family and would extort payment for these so-called "damages" from the victims.
This would include convincing his victims to drain their parent's savings accounts, open lines of credit, solicit money from friends and acquaintances, sell real estate properties, and even perform unpaid labor and earn money through prostitution.
One particular female victim who was sexually groomed by Ray starting when she was a college student was forced to engage in commercial sex acts to pay back money that she did not actually owe him. In order to blackmail her into performing these acts, Ray collected sexually explicit photographs and personal information and also used acts of physical violence such as tying her to a chair and putting a plastic bag over her head, nearly suffocating her to death.
Ultimately, Ray received millions of dollars of proceeds from these forced acts of prostitution.
Additionally, three other victims were forced to perform unpaid labor on Ray's family member's property in North Carolina, sometimes even in the middle of the night. Ray used various physical and psychological abuse tactics to force the three victims to continue this work.
The criminal proceeds that Ray received from the sex cult were shared with at least two associates who helped him collect them. They were laundered through an internet domain business, which Ray evaded paying taxes on.
Williams commented on the heinousness of the case.
"Larry Ray is a monster. For years, he inflicted brutal and lifelong harm on innocent victims. Students who had their lives ahead of them. He groomed them and abused them into submission for his own gain," he said.
"The sentence imposed today will ensure that Ray will never harm victims again. I commend the brave victims who testified in court in the face of incredible trauma," Williams added.
Ray was sentenced for the charges of racketeering conspiracy, violent crime in aid of racketeering, extortion, sex trafficking, forced labor, tax evasion, and money laundering offenses.
In addition to his sentence, Ray was also sentenced to a lifetime of supervised release and ordered to give up more than $2.4 million of proceeds from the sale of his GoDaddy portfolio and the Pinehurst, North Carolina, residence where he forced his victims to perform unpaid labor.
Ray's co-defendant, Isabella Pollok, will be sentenced on Wednesday, Feb. 22.
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