Hardly a Chloe Sullivan hero move — but at least she did the right thing in the end.
Allison Mack is currently facing her own sentencing after pleading guilty to racketeering charges for her part in the NXIVM sex cult, which used blackmail and other forms of coercion to turn troubled women — often actresses — into slaves for a man named Keith Raniere.
Raniere was convicted in the summer of 2019 after a harrowing trial in which we heard from multiple victims about how they gave up their lives and their bodies, in every way possible — as they were branded with Raniere’s initials. After being found guilty the mastermind behind these many crimes was sentenced to a merciless 120 years in prison. And good riddance.
But what about Allison Mack?
The Smallville star served as a recruiter, gaining victims’ trust for the self-help, “leadership training” program which led them to eventually turn over collateral which gave NXIVM leverage over them. (You can learn more about the insidious process HERE.) But was she also a victim to Raniere? Another enslaved woman herself, indoctrinated into following his commands? If so, how do you sentence such a person?
It’s unclear if those deeper moral questions will come into play in Mack’s sentencing hearing, which is set to take place on June 30. But one thing federal prosecutors would like the judge to take into account is her cooperation in the case, late though it may have been.
In a sentencing memo on Monday, the feds asked for leniency for the actress, revealing that she provided tons of help in convicting Raniere — help that was not widely known as she didn’t testify in the trial. The memo reads:
“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.”
Mack explained the process of soliciting nude photos for blackmail to the government and provided, per the memo, emails and other documentary evidence exposing crimes of Raniere and others in the organization.
Most importantly she gave prosecutors the smoking gun, the audio tape in which Raniere described the branding ritual, something he had denied involvement in. On the tape, he gives Mack specific instructions such as that the person “should be completely nude and sort of held to the table like a, sort of almost like a sacrifice” and “should ask to be branded.” He can be heard saying:
“Should say, please brand me it would be an honor, or something like that. An honor I want to wear for the rest of my life, I don’t know… And they should probably say that before they’re held down, so it doesn’t seem like they are being coerced.”
Prosecutors referred to the tape often during the trial as it demolished his denial. But for whatever reason, however she was convinced, Allison still did things which “caused extraordinary harm and pain to the victims in this case,” says the memo. So how will the judge ultimately rule?
Allison faces 14-17.5 years in prison for the crimes to which she pleaded. We’ll be very interested to see how much the court takes her cooperation into account — weighed against the harm she personally caused.
What do YOU think should happen to Allison Mack??
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