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NXIVM leader facing new charges

April 21, 2018 10:23 AM

HALFMOON - NXIVM leader, Keith Raniere, is facing new charges.

According to court documents, Raniere and one time TV actress Allison Mack are charged with sex trafficking and forced labor conspiracy.

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Mack is accused of recruiting women to join what they believed was a female mentorship group. Investigators say those women were then exploited, and forced to have sex with Raniere.

In exchange, prosecutors say Mack received financial benefits.

Raniere's neighbors weren't surprised to hear about Mack being arrested and charged in connection to the controversial group.

"We are kind of anticipating more people may be arrested or looked into. It's not a surprise. It's such a big organization that we know more things are in the works," said Andrea Worthington.

"It's just laid out very nice, and people just seem to be very friendly. Had I known this was going on I never would've bought a house here," said Heidi Parkes.

Mack is best known for her role on the TV show "Smallville" On her blog, Mack talks about pursuing mental stability and happiness through what she calls "nourishment". On that same page, she refers to Raniere as her mentor and friend.

A victim's family member spoke differently about Mack's intentions after her arraignment in Brooklyn on Friday.

"I want to see her put away. She's dangerous, she's sick, she's evil, she's dark, and she's done harm to many people. Imagine having your initials burned into a woman's body. That happened," said Stanley Zaress.

The indictment released Friday states Raniere and Mack acted with others to traffic women with NXIVM.

"I think there's more that we don't know, about what they were doing, and that's the scariest part," said Worthington.

Though it may be slow, some neighbors are glad to see progress being made."

"I am so glad to be rid of this vile presence in the neighborhood. And I hope justice can prevail," said Parkes.

Mack has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

She was detained, and will have a bail hearing on Monday, in Brooklyn.
 

Credits

Muneib Chater

Copyright 2018 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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