She Starred on a Hit CW Show. Now, Sex Trafficking Charges

'Smallville' star Allison Mack accused of luring women into cult-like group run by Keith Raniere
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 21, 2018 7:30 AM CDT
This June 26, 2012, file photo shows Allison Mack at a party in Los Angeles.   (Photo by Todd Williamson/Invision/AP, File)

(Newser) – A statement from the DOJ Friday revealed two indictments for sex trafficking, and fans of a former CW show are shocked to see one of the stars as one of the accused. CNN and the AP report Allison Mack, who appeared on the Superman-themed show Smallville, was hit with charges of sex trafficking, sex trafficking conspiracy, and forced labor conspiracy for her alleged role as a slave "master" in helping recruit women into a cult-like group called Nxivm (pronounced NEX-ium). Keith Raniere (aka "Vanguard"), the founder of the organization that he promotes as being a self-help group, was also indicted. Mack "recruited women to join what was purported to be a female mentorship group that was, in fact, created and led by Keith Raniere," US Attorney Richard P. Donoghue says in the DOJ statement. "The victims were then exploited, both sexually and for their labor, to the defendants' benefit."

Page Six reports the 35-year-old actress allegedly served as Raniere's direct "slave" but also lorded over other women as their "master." She's accused of convincing women to join Nxivm and hand over blackmail-worthy photos and statements, then forcing them to pose naked for the camera, cut down on their eating, grow out their pubic hair, and take part in "readiness" drills that left them without much sleep, among other demands. Mack's rep had no comment, but on the Nxivm website, a statement in English and Spanish appears, noting: "In response to the allegations against our founder, Keith Raniere, we are currently working with the authorities to demonstrate his innocence and true character." If convicted, both Mack and Raniere face minimum sentences of 15 years in prison and possible life imprisonment.

(Read more sex trafficking stories.)

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