Branded Women, New York, USA - 08 Apr 2019
Credit: Mark Lennihan/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Allison Mack, the actress best known for her role as Chloe Sullivan on Smallville, pleaded guilty to racketeering and racketeering conspiracy charges in Brooklyn federal court Monday for her involvement in the controversial self-help group Nxivm, the New York Times reports. Mack was arrested by federal authorities last year, and prosecutors allege that she recruited women to be sex slaves for the group’s founder, Keith Raniere.

Mack had previously pleaded not guilty to charges including sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit sex trafficking and forced labor, and had been released on $5 million bail.

“As alleged in the indictment, Allison Mack recruited women to join what was purported to be a female mentorship group that was, in fact, created and led by Keith Raniere,” United States Attorney Richard P. Donoghue said in a statement after Mack’s arrest last year. “The victims were then exploited, both sexually and for their labor, to the defendants’ benefit. This Office and our law enforcement partners are committed to prosecuting predators who victimize others through sex trafficking and forced labor.”

According to the Associated Press, Mack wept as she admitted her crimes Monday and told a judge, “I believed Keith Raniere’s intentions were to help people, and I was wrong.”

On the surface, Nxivm offered self-help classes, but prosecutors allege that there was a secret sub-group within the organization known as DOS, an acronym that stands for a Latin phrase that loosely translates to “Lord/Master of the Obedient Female Companions.” The group allegedly consisted of female “slaves” headed by “masters,” and often involved the women being branded with Raniere’s initials.

Two other members of the group, Nancy Salzman and her daughter Lauren Salzman, also entered guilty pleas recently.

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