Danny Masterson sentenced to 30 years to life for two rapes


Danny Masterson sentenced to 30 years to life for two rapes

US actor Danny Masterson has been sentenced to serve 30 years to life in prison for raping two women.

Masterson starred on That ’70s Show, a TV series that was airing at the time of his crimes in the early 2000s. Prosecutors argued Masterson, 47, had relied on his status as a prominent Scientologist to avoid accountability.

Judge Charlaine Olmedo allowed the victims of his crimes to read impact statements in court ahead of his sentencing. Prominent former Scientologist and actress Leah Remini attended Thursday’s hearing and comforted the women before and after they delivered their statements.

“I wished I had reported him earlier to the police,” one of the women said, according to US media. Another woman told Masterson: “I forgive you. Your sickness is no longer mine to bear,” according to Reuters.

Masterson remained silent throughout the hearing.

As the judge read his sentence – the maximum penalty allowed – his wife, Bijou Phillips, was seen in court breaking down in tears. Masterson was found guilty in May at a re-trial after the first jury was unable to reach a verdict in 2022. Following his conviction, Masterson was deemed a flight risk and was taken into prison custody.

The actor was convicted after three women testified that he had sexually assaulted them at his Hollywood home from 2001-03 – during the height of his television fame.

The jury heard testimony that he had given them drugs before he assaulted them.

He was found guilty of rape against two of his three accusers. The charges brought by the third accuser were declared a mistrial and prosecutors said they do not plan to retry the case.

Alison Anderson, a lawyer representing two of the victims, said in a statement sent to BBC News that the women “have displayed tremendous strength and bravery, by coming forward to law enforcement and participating directly in two gruelling criminal trials”.

“Despite persistent harassment, obstruction and intimidation, these courageous women helped hold a ruthless sexual predator accountable today,” she said.

Throughout the trial, prosecutors argued that the Church of Scientology had helped cover up the assaults – an allegation the organisation has categorically denied.


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