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How accused Sarah Lawrence sex cult leader dragged me into sex-tainted world



The man who owns the Upper East Side pad used by accused Sarah Lawrence College cult leader Lawrence Ray revealed to The Post on Tuesday how he was lured in himself by the suspect — and dragged into a bedroom to watch two students have sex.
“I was shocked” by the sex scene, Lee Chen said, adding that he was hauled off the couch more than once by Ray to watch the romping pair, who included a co-ed Chen believed was the suspect’s girlfriend.
“I thought he would be upset, and when I looked at him, he was smiling broadly, looking at me,” Chen said of Ray.
Chen, 53, said he met Ray, 60, in 2005 in the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, where Chen ended up serving around 80 days behind bars for violating his supervised release on a suspected-hacking-related offense. Ray was in the lock-up amid a child-custody dispute.
“Unfortunately, misfortune of misfortune upon misfortune, this guy latched onto me, and stupidly, I’m sitting there trying to mind my own business, and he’s saying, ‘Oh, your parents … you didn’t have enough love when you were younger,’ ” Chen said. “That was the approach he took to try to suck me in.”
Chen — a former businessman who said he is now self-employed doing securities trading involving cryptocurrency, among other things — explained that Ray ended up on his couch in his East 93rd Street apartment.
The feds say Ray arrived there in 2011 — with Sarah Lawrence college groupies in tow — and stayed for several years.
Ray is accused of cruelly coercing the young students into doing his bidding, abusing them sexually, mentally and physically and extorting hundreds of thousands of dollars from them over nearly the next decade. He carried out some of his alleged crimes in North Carolina, too, authorities said.
Chen, who is not charged in the case, said he “absolutely” thought the situation of Ray with the students was weird and that he was “very upset” when the suspect would drag him to watch the sex sessions “more than once.
“I realize it sounds strange, but every time I complained about [his involvement with the students], he roundly chastised me for having a bad mood and negatively affecting the children,” Chen said. “And stupidly, while it was occurring, I was thinking, ‘This guy does make sense, maybe I shouldn’t get upset.’
“It’s difficult for me to convey to you his coercive abilities unless you’ve experienced it yourself,” Chen said of Ray.
“He has unusual mannerism. He has this habit of not only changing the subject but talking you to death.
“For example, I told him, ‘Look, you gotta get out of my bedroom, you gotta get these kids out of my home.’ He changes the subject and then starts talking to me about my father and how my father treated me when I was young and then goes on for hours.
“Every time I frowned in his presence, he’d start berating me [that I was] infecting people with my bad mood … that I was sabotaging his work.
“When you’re in the middle of it … it’s extraordinarily difficult to pull yourself away from this and see the complete absurdity of it all,” Chen said.
“I mean, I’m not making excuses. … I could have been more responsible and taken the responsibility upon myself to stand up and say, ‘No more.’ I mean, eventually, I did, but too late. Because all these other people were adversely affected as well.”
Chen claimed that Ray convinced him to give him thousands of dollars, including to help him spy on a former girlfriend that Ray claimed was working with his former pal, ex-NYPD Commissioner Bernie Kerik, to ruin him.
Chen finally successfully had Ray evicted for good around 2016.

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