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Actor Danny Masterson arrested over rape charges

According to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office,Actor Danny Masterson, who appeared inThat ’70s Show and stared in The Ranch on Netflix–before being fired in 2017 following rape allegations– has been charged with three counts of rape by force or fear and faces a maximum of 45 years to life in prison if convicted.

He was arrested on Wednesday morning and was later released on statutory bail which was set at $3.3 million.

The Church of Scientology has not been charged with a crime or named by the district attorney’s office and the women Masterson is accused of sexually assaulting have not been named.

Masterson is accused of raping a 23-year-old woman some time between October and December of 2003, a 28-year-old woman that same year as well as a 23-year-old woman in 2001. All of the allegations of rape occurred in the actor’s home in Hollywood Hills.

The District Attorney’s office also announced they had decided against filing two other charges:The first,in which a woman alleged she’d been repeatedly raped by the actor throughout their relationship while living together in 2002,due to insufficient evidence, while the second, a claim that Masterson had raped a woman twice in August and September 1996, due to the statute of limitations.

In August 2019, four women,filed a lawsuit against Masterson and the Church of Scientology, in which they alleged they were threatened surveilled and stalked in retaliation for going to the police with their rape claims about the actor.

In the lawsuit, one woman said people associated with the church loitered outside her home, looked through her windows and filmed her home and family after she reported Masterson to the police.

At that time, on court papers responding to the accusations by the women, a lawyer for Masterson called the lawsuit a “money grab” and a “publicity stunt orchestrated by Masterson’s ex-girlfriends.” A lawyer for the church described one of the women’s claims in court papers as “false and malicious” and said her experiences with her trash disappearing and people loitering near her house were simply the “price of modern, urban life.”

Following his recent arrest, Masterson’s attorney Tom Meserau who represented Bill Cosby and Michael Jackson in their sexual assault cases has released a statement saying: “Mr. Masterson is innocent and we’re confident that he will be exonerated when all the evidence finally comes to light and witnesses have the opportunity to testify.”

 His arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 18.

 

 

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