Allison Mack, known for her role in the CW series Smallville, pleaded guilty to racketeering and racketeering conspiracy charges for her role in the Nxivm sex-cult case in a Brooklyn district court on Monday.
Hours before the jury was to be selected for her case, Mack wept as she apologized to the judge for her involvement in the sex-slavery cult based near Albany, New York. The 36-year-old actress was one of six defendants indicted last year by federal authorities.
"I have come to the conclusion that I must take full responsibility for my conduct and that’s why I am pleading guilty today," Mack told the court. "I am very sorry for my role in this case. I am very sorry to my family and to the good people I hurt through my misguided adherence to Keith Raniere’s teachings."
Mack was originally arrested last year and charged with sex trafficking, sex trafficking conspiracy, and forced labor for her role in the organization. She pleaded not-guilty and was released on $5 million bail.
During her court appearance Monday, Mack explained that she was drawn to Nxivm as a means of finding "purpose." However, upon further reflection, the actress admitted that although she initially believed the group was being led by “wonderful people" she later realized they were not as well-intentioned as she had originally perceived.
According to prosecutors, Nxivm's surface-level operations were providing expensive self-help courses, however the group also operated an underground network titled DOS, which enslaved women led by "masters." The acronym stands for Dominus Obsequious Sororium, Latin for Master Over Slave Women. The cult's leader Keith Raniere allegedly mandated the DOS women be on starvation diets, branded with his initials, and groomed to have sex with him.
"I concealed Keith Raniere’s role as the head of DOS," Mack admitted to the judge on Monday.
During her 12-year affiliation with the cult, Mack admitted that she had a slave who she commanded "to perform services" for her. According to the defendant, the DOS system made enslaved women feel as though they would "suffer serious harm" should they not obey the commands of the "masters." Those in control used fear tactics in connection to the compromising content women had handed over, such as nude photos and financial information.
The actress faces up to 40 years in prison for her role in DOS, according to TMZ.