Self-Help Group Exposed as a Sex Trafficking Cult

A so-called self-help group based out of Albany, New York called NXIVM was exposed as a sex-trafficking cult by The New York Times after former members came out and described the abuses they endured. 

 The Organization's Logo

The leader is man named Keith Raniere, who called himself “Vanguard” and coerced the women into having sex with him and forcing them into submission. The trafficking operations took place under the label of DOS, a side-sect of NXIVM ran by Raniere. Women who were recruited to be a part of it were forced to brand themselves, were starved, treated as sex slaves, and were coerced into handing over nude photos of themselves, criminal confessions, and financial information which the organization used as leverage to prevent them from speaking out. Canadian actress Sarah Edmondson described the branding process to the New York Times, detailing that the women were cauterized by a doctor against their will, initially thinking they would only be getting small tattoos as a type of initiation into the group. Edmondson also explained how the women were forced to take an oath of obedience to their "masters".

Actress Sarah Edmondson

Amidst these reports, rumours began to emerge that former Smallville actress and current star of the CBC drama Burden of Truth Kristin Kreuk was involved in recruiting women as sex-slaves. She quickly took to Twitter to clarify that she took classes with NXIVM to help her overcome her shyness when she was in her early 20s, but that she was in no way part of the DOS inner-circle. She also expressed her horror at the stories that have come out surrounding the organization and lent her support to all the women who have spoken out. Edmondson took to Twitter and backed up Kreuk’s version of events, saying “For the record, my dear friend @MsKristinKreuk was never in the inner circle of #NXIVM. She never recruited sex slaves and has been out since 2013 before shit got weird. She is a lovely person who should not be dragged into this mess. Thank you #Cult #DOS #freedom #TRUTH”. 

Raniere was arrested on March 26th, 2018 in Mexico on sex-trafficking and forced labour charges. Reports claim that former Smallville actress Allison Mack was his number 2, luring women into the cult, and that it is quite possible that she will be charged in the near future. Reports also suggest that the initials the women who were “slaves” were branded with were not only Raniere’s initials, but Mack’s as well. A grand jury investigation is currently in progress. 


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