Actress Allison Mack provided audio tape to convict NXIVM's sex trafficking cult leader

“Do you think the person who’s being branded should be... sort of almost like a sacrifice?”

By Kylie Cheung
Published June 22, 2021 9:08PM (EDT)
Actress Allison Mack departs the United States Eastern District Court (Jemal Countess/Getty Images)
Actress Allison Mack departs the United States Eastern District Court (Jemal Countess/Getty Images)

Although Former "Smallville" actor Allison Mack did not testify in the trial of Keith Raniere, it turns out she was involved in getting the leader of the NXIVM cult sentenced. Variety reports that according to a sentencing memo prosecutors shared on Monday, Mack cooperated with prosecutors to provide an audio tape that helped convict Raniere of sex trafficking.

According to the memo, which details key lines and discussion points from the disturbing tape, Raniere and Mack discuss chilling details of a "branding" ceremony for his victims  – a practice that Mack took credit for, according to the New York Times

Raniere ask Mack, "Do you think the person who's being branded should be completely nude and sort of held to the table like a, sort of almost like a sacrifice?" Raniere also suggests filming the ritual so that the video could be used against his victims if they tried to leave the cult. He also insisted that his victims should be the ones to "ask to be branded" and call it "an honor, or something like that," so he couldn't be accused of coercing them. 

Upon her arrest in 2018, Mack was charged with sex trafficking and forced labor conspiracy. She was released on bond and has been under house arrest since April 2018. In 2019 she pleaded guilty to racketeering charges, and her sentencing trial will take place on June 30. Although she faces 14 to 17.5 years behind bars, federal prosecutors are asking U.S. District Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis to give her a reduced sentence, in the same memo released on Monday. Raniere has already been convicted and sentenced to 120 years in prison. 

"Although Mack could have provided even more substantial assistance had she made the decision to cooperate earlier, Mack provided significant, detailed and highly corroborated information which assisted the government in its prosecution," the prosecutors' memo reads.

While Mack provided the audio tape that was crucial to prosecutors' case against Raniere, former NXIVM member Sarah Edmondson also claims that Mack helped Raniere with recruiting women into an enclave within the group called Dominus Obsequious Sororium or DOS, and coaxing them to give nude photos and have sex with Raniere. For years, NXIVM publicly operated as a "management and leadership training program," according to Variety, only to operate as a sex trafficking cult behind closed doors, in which Raniere exercised significant control over his victims. NXIVM recruited actors and socialites in particular, between 1998 and 2018.

Ahead of Mack's sentencing trial next week, her lawyers are due to share their sentencing memo for her case by Friday, Variety reports


Kylie Cheung

Kylie Cheung is a staff writer at Salon covering culture. She is also the author of "A Woman's Place," a collection of feminist essays. You can follow her work on Twitter @kylietcheung.

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Allison Mack Brief Cult Keith Raniere Nxivm