Actress Allison Mack gets 3 years in jail for sex-slave case


The 'Smallville' actress pleaded guilty for her role in recruiting women to be sex slaves in Keith Raniere's controversial NXIVM cult. Photo: AP

Smallville actress Allison Mack was sentenced to three years in jail Wednesday (June 30) for her role in recruiting women to be sex slaves in Keith Raniere's controversial NXIVM cult.

Mack, 38, received a reduced sentence after pleading guilty to racketeering charges in April 2019 and cooperating with prosecutors.

"I'm ashamed of the way I behaved," Mack, who played Clark Kent's best friend from 2001 to 2011 in the series, told the hearing in federal court in Brooklyn.

The German-born American added that she was "filled with remorse and guilt" for what she called a "horrific chapter of my life".

Prosecutors had recommended a more lenient sentence than the 14 to 17 years stipulated by the law due to her participation in their investigation.

Mack had detailed to investigators how Raniere, a "self-help" guru, had tricked his female employees into recruiting women and making them have sex with him.

She gave a recording of a conversation with Raniere to prosecutors that proved crucial to his conviction.

In the recording, he explained a filmed ritual during which some of the women were branded like cattle with his initials.

Mack was ordered to surrender to authorities to begin her sentence on Sept 29.

Raniere, whose cult was based near Albany north of New York City, was jailed for 120 years in October, after being arrested in Mexico in 2018.

He swapped personal development training courses for sex sessions as the head of a group of up to 20 women.

Followers signed up for US$5,000, five-day self-help courses, but some were then financially and sexually exploited and had to follow a restrictive diet as Raniere - known as "Vanguard" - exerted his control, the jury at his trial in 2019 was told.

In 2015, he established a faction within the group called DOS, a pyramid structure in which the women were "slaves" and "Grand Master" Raniere sat at the top.

The "slaves" were made to have sex with Raniere - and hand over personal information and compromising photos.

He was convicted in June 2019 on all seven charges brought against him, including racketeering, sex trafficking, extortion, criminal conspiracy and the sexual exploitation of a 15-year-old girl.

Last year, the heiress of Canadian drinks empire Seagram, 41-year-old Clare Bronfman, was sentenced to more than six years in prison by a New York court for credit card fraud and harboring illegal immigrants on behalf of Raniere.

Prosecutors said Bronfman spent tens of millions of dollars supporting NXIVM, pronounced "nexium". – AFP

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