Here’s What’s Going On With Smallville Actress Allison Mack, And Her Alleged Role In A ‘Sex Cult’
This story is... really something.
For the past few weeks, the internet has been awash with reports about Allison Mack, the former Smallville actress who has been arrested for her involvement in a ‘sex cult’.
It’s a complicated story with lots of horrific details – here’s a quick summary of what’s going on.
What is this cult all about?
NXIVM (pronounced ‘Nexium’) is a US-based cult that masquerades as a self-help organisation for women’s empowerment, founded by a man called Keith Raniere in 1998.
It was revealed in a 2017 New York Times investigation that members were referred to as ‘slaves’, blackmailed with private photos and information, and branded with Raniere’s name. Last month, he was arrested and charged with sex trafficking, along with Mack, who was reportedly involved with supplying ‘slaves’ to him.
Listening to Keith Raniere explore thoughts on media, love and humanity. Mind is blown. I am so inspired.
— Allison Mack (@allisonmack) October 27, 2013
How did Mack get involved in the cult?
Here is a selfie because I don't know what to post. I am really terrible with social media. Fun fact "Beauty and the Beast" fans: Jay's show "Mary Kills People" airs at the same time (8pm) as "Burden of Truth." A fact I find rather amusing. But, as I am clearly the more Canadian of the two of us, you should probably watch our show live and his after it airs;)
According to the New York Post, Mack was introduced to the cult by her Smallville co-star Kristin Kreuk – Kreuk has denied being in the ‘inner circle’, and says she didn’t see any illegal activity take place while she was a member.
The accusations that I was in the ‘inner circle’ or recruited women as ‘sex slaves’ are blatantly false. During my time, I never experienced any illegal or nefarious activity. I am horrified and disgusted by what has come out about DOS.
DOS is another name for the cult – it’s short for a Latin phrase that loosely translates to ‘master over the slave women’.
What is she being accused of?
Mack stands accused of being a member of the ‘inner circle’ Kreuk spoke of – at her bail hearing yesterday, the US Attorney wrote that she has been charged with:
Using force, fraud and coercion to recruit and maintain DOS slaves, and instructing those slaves to engage in sexual acts with Raniere, among other assignments. The defendant aggressively recruited DOS slaves and required those slaves to recruit slaves of their own.
Documents allege that DOS ‘slaves’ were forced to follow extremely restrictive diets, not remove their pubic hair in accordance to Raniere’s preferences, and not to masturbate.
According to New York Post reporter Frank Parlato, it was Mack who came up with the idea of branding new members, and the mark combined Raniere’s initials and her own.
.@EmWatson I'm a fellow actress like yourself & involved in an amazing women's movement I think you'd dig. I'd love to chat if you're open.
— Allison Mack (@allisonmack) January 24, 2016
To give you a small example of how Mack attempted to recruit members – People magazine uncovered several tweets from her urging Emma Watson to join her ‘amazing women’s movement’ in 2016, saying:
I participate in a unique human development and women’s movement I’d love to tell you about. As a fellow actress I can relate so well to your vision and what you want to see in the world. I think we could work together. Let me know if you’re willing to chat.
What’s going to happen next?
Mack pleaded not guilty to sex trafficking and was granted bail – she’ll be placed under home detention in California until her next court date on May 3, and could face a minimum of 15 years in prison if she’s found guilty.
Raniere, meanwhile, is being held without bail until his trial. In a letter on the NXIVM website, he denied “abusing, coercing or harming” anyone.
Have your say