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“Smallville” actress Allison Mack has publicly apologized to her victims, calling her time with the sex-cult NXIVM “the biggest mistake and regret of my life.”
Mack penned the apology, obtained by Oxygen.com, to “those who have been harmed by my actions,” more than two years after the actress pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy and racketeering related to her role as a high-ranking member of the sex cult led by Keith Raniere.
Mack’s apology letter was included as part of a series of letters written to federal judge Nicholas G. Garaufis from Mack’s family, friends and recent community college professors ahead of her sentencing hearing scheduled to take place on Wednesday.
“It is now of paramount importance to me to say, from the bottom of my heart, I am so sorry,” Mack wrote of her involvement with the group. “I threw myself into the teachings of Keith Rainire (sic) with everything I had. I believed, whole-heartedly, that his mentorship was leading me to a better, more enlightened version of myself. I devoted my loyalty, my resources, and, ultimately, my life to him. This was the biggest mistake and greatest regret of my life.”
Mack also apologized those she had recruited into the group, including those women she convinced to join the secret society within NXIVM known as “DOS,” an acronym used to stand for a bastardized Latin phrase loosely translated to mean “Lord/Master of the Obedient Female Companions.”
According to a statement from federal prosecutors, women believed they were joining a female mentorship group when in reality they were exploited “both sexually and for their labor.”
The high-ranking women in the group known as “masters” would recruit “slaves” beneath them in a pyramid scheme structure. To gain entry to the group, women had to provide “highly damaging” collateral including nude photos of themselves, rights to their assets or damaging information about friends of family members, prosecutors said. Many members were also branded on their pelvic area with a symbol containing Raniere’s initials.
Mack was “one of the women in the first level of the pyramid” and concealed Raniere’s position at the top of the pyramid from others in the group.
“I am sorry to those of you that I brought into Nxivm. I am sorry I ever exposed you to the nefarious and emotionally abusive schemes of a twisted man,” Mack wrote. “I am sorry that I encouraged you to use your resources to participate in something that was ultimately so ugly. I do not take lightly the responsibility I have in the lives of those I love and I feel a heavy weight of guilt for having misused your trust, leading you down a negative path.”
In the years since Mack left the group, she said she felt “overwhelming shame” for her involvement.
“There were times I was not sure I would make it through this alive, the pain was so crippling. That said, I know that coming out the other side, I am a better, kinder woman because of this,” she wrote. “I know I cannot heal the pain my betrayal has caused to you and your loved ones, but I can promise you that your hurt has not gone unseen and acknowledging this has changed me to my core.”
Mack could face a sentence of 15 years to life behind bars, however, her defense attorneys have asked the judge to impose “a sentence without incarceration,” according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
“Allison Mack recognizes that she has committed grievous wrongs and that she has earned punishment. She cannot undo what has been done, and she will have to live with the regret for the rest of her life. But Ms. Mack still holds the potential to be valuable to society—as a family member, as a friend, as a helper to those in need and as a cautionary tale,” her attorneys wrote, citing her efforts since leaving the group to become a productive member of society and her cooperation with authorities to ensure Raniere’s conviction.
In the three years since her arrest, her attorneys said she has “turned her life around” and “re-devoted herself to pursuing a positive and constructive life.”
They said that Mack has used her time to reconnect with family, obtain an associate’s degree from a local community college where her professors said she was a “model student” and found employment as a caterer.
“The Nxivm saga and the story of Ms. Mack’s descent have been a tragedy for all involved. But that need not, and should not, be the end of the story for Allison Mack,” her attorneys wrote. “Her acceptance of responsibility, and the strides that Ms. Mack has made since her arrest, provide evidence that, from this point forward, the world can be a better place for having her in it.”
According to her attorneys, Mack has also publicly denounced NXIVM and Raniere and distanced herself from his remaining followers, including filing from divorce from Nicki Clyne, who they said she had married at Raniere's direction to help Clyne gain "favorable immigration status."
In their own sentencing memorandum, prosecutors noted that Mack had provided “substantial assistance” to authorities during Raniere’s prosecution and recommended the court “impose a sentence below the otherwise applicable advisory Guidelines range,” according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
Prosecutors said Mack, who never testified at Raniere’s trial, provided details about crimes committed by “firstline” DOS “masters,” Raniere’s role in devising assignments for Mack’s slaves including his requests for nude photographs and his instructions for how some of the women should be tasked with seducing him as part of their required assignments, along with her own involvement in the crimes.
She also provided a recording of a conversation she had with Raniere, where he discussed how the women should be branded.
Raniere was sentenced in 2020 to 120 years behind bars after he was found guilty of sex trafficking and other crimes.
Mack’s family members also asked the judge for leniency, noting the significant changes they’ve seen in her since she left NXIVM.
“In my own time spent with Allison, I have noted a deep sense of shame in her heart,” her younger sister wrote. “She is utterly direct about the mistakes she has made, and the damaging consequences. Rather than attempt to go back, or to justify or excuse these choices, Allison instead remains committed to her path to rehabilitation. The greatest impression she leaves is that she wishes to improve herself everyday, and to start afresh with new connections, accountability, and an education that challenges her to greater heights of intellect and contribution to her community and to her family.”
Her older brother referred to the 12 years Mack had spent within the group as a “bad dream.”
“She had become completely lost in that organization and it swallowed her whole life,” he wrote.
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