Smallville star’s ‘sex cult’ ruse
SMALLVILLE star Allison Mack was gaunt, fragile, sugary sweet - and eager to lure women into the twisted world of the Nxivm sex cult, an actress who was targeted claims.
Pakistani-born actress Samia Shoaib, who had roles in the '90s flicks Pi and The Sixth Sense, still has the overly friendly - even frantic - emails Mack sent her in hopes of getting her on board.
The two had met at an audition for an NBC pilot in New York in 2013. Shoaib told the New York Post she was immediately inundated with requests to meet and share a friendship.
"Is there anything you have read that you can send to me? I would love to get into your brain a bit?!" Mack emailed her in March of that year.
Shoaib was shocked last week to learn that Mack had been charged with sex trafficking and forced labour while involved with the alleged cult. She pleaded not guilty.
When the pair met, Shoaib recalled to The Post, Mack seemed desperate, but hardly dangerous. "I wish I could tell you alarm bells went off, but they really didn't. She was a very sweet girl."
The pair met twice in the month after they met, once at an Amsterdam Avenue restaurant and another time at Shoaib's Upper West Side apartment.
Each time, Mack appeared more "fragile and gaunt" with dark circles under her eyes, Shoaib said.
"She was definitely physically suffering," Shoaib said. "There's no question she was sleep-deprived."
The conversations quickly shifted from feminism to a Nxivm-affiliated woman's group called JNess, which Mack encouraged Shoaib to join. But her descriptions of the group were always "very vague," Shoaib said.
She would say: "'It's a bunch of women. We go on a retreat upstate, and we share our experiences and support each other,'" Shoaib said. "That was about it."
Mack also put Shoaib on the JNess email list and invited her to gatherings and events, such as a Broadway show and dinner at the Gershwin Theater in 2014, according to emails Shoaib shared with the Post.
"JNess invites you for an evening of connection," according to an email invite for a 2015 gathering that advertised Mack as the "special guest speaker" and "leader of JNess."
Shoaib, now 47, suspects Mack lost interest when she found out how old she was.
"I have to be honest with you I did not get any sexual vibes from her at all," Shoaib said. "It's so hard to see her as a sinister character."
Still, one email Mack sent after their final dinner in 2013 sticks out to Shoaib: "Thank you for last night!" Mack wrote. "I had a lovely time with you and [your friend]. You are both delicious women."