Viewers have been hooked by The Vow, a disturbing documentary about the alleged New York-based sex cult NXIVM, which claims to be a self-help organisation.
Episode four tells the horrific story of India Oxenberg, a victim of this sexual trafficking cult, which saw her starved and branded by its leaders.
Who is India Oxenberg?
India is one of the victims of the dark NXIVM cult whose disturbing experience is detailed in The Vow.
India is the daughter of Catherine Oxenberg, actress in the 1980s original series of Dynasty and daughter of Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia.
In 2011, Catherine introduced her 19-year-old daughter to NXIVM, with the hope that their self-help and business courses would help India start a business and develop her personal skills.
However, she later discovered that India had become involved in a sex trafficking ring within NXIVM named DOS.
Oxenberg said: “I found out that India was involved in this secret inner group within NXIVM, and it’s just women and it’s based on this slave-master hierarchy,”
“And they sign a lifetime vow of obedience and they are on these starvation drugs.”
India was pressured into following a 500-calorie-a-day diet and to submit nude photos to be used as blackmail if she ever wanted to leave the group.
Young India was also manipulated into having a sexual relationship with the cult leader Keith Raniere, and was branded with his initials.
Catherine said she didn’t realise her daughter had become a sex-slave for the group until it was too late.
“It was a slow drip. First, she seemed more distant, more distracted, more serious, kind of burdened,”
“But it was slow and I wouldn’t see her and she would pretend that she could come and go as she pleased, but the truth is they had her on a very tight rein and they had a lot of control and the control became absolute.”
Where is India Oxenberg now and is she still in NXIVM?
In August 2018, India’s mother Catherine revealed that she had left the cult around June 2018, following leader Raniere’s arrest
India has been keeping out of the news ever since.
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Catherine has said that India is planning on writing a book to document her experience as part of her recovery process.
She said: “I think it’s important as part of India’s healing process, as part of her reclaiming her sense of autonomy,
“Feeling empowered as a woman and not as a victim anymore. She’s been bantered around and exposed so much in the press, largely at my hands, but it was the only recourse I had as far as getting her out.”