The actress has been part of several pedophile stings over the last five years.
update on 9/1/20
Sony Pictures Television has optioned the rights to Nichols' story and her undercover work tracking pedophiles and human traffickers for a TV series.
According to Deadline, "Her story as a Hollywood vigilante is now being adapted for the small screen," with Nichols expected to executive produce and star in the series.
I have been DYING to announce this!!!!! 😊😊😊. Riverdale’s Marisol Nichols’ Wild Tale Of Becoming An Undercover Sex Trafficking Agent To Be Turned Into TV Series By Sony Pictures Television https://t.co/4L65NJKs33 via @Deadline
Her unlikely side-gig was chronicled in an article for Marie Claire earlier this year, which you can read more about in the original post below.
original story below: 4/30/20 3:46 PM
Marisol Nichols is using her acting skills to help rid the world of child predators.
Over the last five years, the actress -- known for her role as Hermione Lodge on "Riverdale" and Chevy Chase's daughter in "Vegas Vacation" -- has been volunteering to work with law-enforcement groups to help catch pedophiles and human traffickers, according to a new, jaw-dropping Marie Claire article.
The 46-year-old has been on locations all over the world attempting to catch the criminals by either playing a parent who is pimping out their offspring or an underage girl getting sold by an older family member.
Even though the situations can be harrowing and the stories upsetting, Nichols said she pushes on in hopes to stop even just one of the monsters before another child is harmed.
And to also get the word out there that this occurs everywhere, not just in foreign countries.
“If good people don't know about it, it will keep happening, because good people are the only ones who will do anything about it," she told the magazine. "They're the ones who, when faced with inhumanity, will try to stop it. Because you have to try, right? Even if it doesn't work."
During one sting operation detailed by Marie Claire, Nichols worked out of a seedy motel room where the operation hoped to capture a predator after putting ads online and in the dark web soliciting sex with children.
Nichols would get on the phone and talk to the pedophiles using a coy, preteen tone, hoping to lure them to the motel room.
"The voice," explained one of the officers on the sting operation. "When she gets on, it's over."
Nichols recalled another operation that brought down a 38-year-old man who "looked like a real estate agent."
"These guys look like normal people," she told the outlet. "And you're pretending that you just happily and eagerly set up children for them to have sex with."
Her journey into this dark underbelly of society began when she went on ride-alongs with cops to do research for roles in "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," "Law & Order: SVU," and "Cold Case."
"It gave me mad respect for these guys," she told the outlet. "It sparked my interest in the trafficking world, realizing and really being on the other side of the underbelly of society."
Nichols also revealed a childhood trauma that influenced her decision to help out other defenseless kids in her adult life -- she was gang raped at age 11.
"It changed the entire trajectory of my life in a day."
She went on to abuse drugs from around that time to well into her 20s, during which she found some solace in a drama club at a community college and eventually moved out to Los Angeles to audition for film and TV.
But she credits the Church of Scientology in helping her kick her drug habit after joining the organization in 1996.
"Honestly, Scientology is what saved my freaking ass. I'd probably be dead."
Her involvement with Scientology, however, poses a challenge for the actress, as lawsuits accusing the church of child abuse, human trafficking, and forced labor have been filed as recently as September 2019, according to Insider.
The church denies all allegations, as does Nichols.
"I get attacked for that all the time," she explained to Marie Claire. "Whenever I post about my sex-trafficking work, [strangers on social media] go apes--t on me."
"You don't have any idea what you are talking about," she explained was her usual online response. "We're not the church known for this sort of thing. Where's the police charges? Where's the evidence?"
Meanwhile, Nichols ends her "Riverdale" run after the fourth season and has the "Saw" spin-off, "Spiral," in the can.