Clifton Park

Second arrest in NXIVM sex trafficking case

Actress ordered sent to jail to await court appearance
Actress Allison Mack in 2012.
Actress Allison Mack in 2012.

SCHENECTADY — A second person has been indicted in connection with the NXIVM sex trafficking case, federal prosecutors said on Friday.

Allison Mack, 35, of Brooklyn, an actress who once starred on the TV show “Smallville,” was indicted Friday alongside NXIVM founder Keith Raniere.

The two face federal sex trafficking, forced labor and conspiracy counts.

Mack was arraigned in federal court in Brooklyn and pleaded not guilty. The judge in the case ordered that she be held in jail. Raniere is to be arraigned on his indictment later.

Raniere, 57, was arrested last month for alleged activities committed by a secret group within NXIVM. According to authorities, the group branded its members with Raniere’s and Mack’s initials and coerced members into having sex with him.

Mack was formally identified as a co-conspirator earlier this month in search warrant documents unsealed at the request of the Albany Times-Union.

The allegations claimed Mack introduced Raniere to one of his alleged sex trafficking victims, instructing her to do what Raniere said. Raniere allegedly took the victim on a blindfolded trip that began in Halfmoon and ended with the woman being coerced into a sex act with another person as Raniere watched.

NXIVM began in 1998 and offered personal improvement workshops. The allegations against Raniere focus on a period from February 2016 to June 2017, just after the secret society was allegedly created.

Raniere made his first appearance last month in federal court in Texas after his arrest in Mexico. He has since been moved to federal custody in Brooklyn and remains in custody. He has denied the charges.

The secret society at the center of the allegations against Raniere and Mack is called DOS. The society included “masters” and “slaves,” with Raniere as the secretive headmaster and Mack as second-in-command, prosecutors allege.

Women would ultimately be compelled to have sex with Raniere and would often be groomed to his liking, according to the federal complaint. If society members did not comply with sexual or other requests, they risked the release of “collateral,” or damaging information they’d supplied about themselves upon entry into the society.

“Today we announce an additional arrest, and an indictment, in a case that brought to light an inconceivable crime,” FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge William F. Sweeney Jr., said in a prepared statement. “As this pyramid scheme continues to unravel, we ask anyone who might have been a victim to reach out to us with information that might further our investigation.”

Categories: News, Schenectady County

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