Actor Danny Masterson of "That '70s Show" fame has been arrested and charged with the rapes of three women, according to Los Angeles prosecutors. Masterson, 44, was taken into custody Wednesday and later released after posting a $3.3 million bail bond.
He is accused of sexually assaulting the women between 2001 and 2003 at his Hollywood Hills home. His arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 18.
Masterson’s attorney, Tom Mesereau, said his client is innocent. "We’re confident that he will be exonerated when all the evidence finally comes to light and witnesses have the opportunity to testify,” he said.
The actor is charged with raping a 23-year-old woman he had invited to his home some time between October and December of 2003, the district attorney’s office said in a news release. He is also accused of raping a 28-year-old woman that same year, as well as a 23-year-old woman in 2001.
He faces a maximum sentence of 45 years to life in prison if convicted.
Prosecutors declined to file charges in two other cases against Masterson investigated by police, citing insufficient evidence and the expiration of statute of limitations.
Masterson has been married to actress and model Bijou Phillips since 2011.
“Obviously, Mr. Masterson and his wife are in complete shock considering that these nearly 20-year-old allegations are suddenly resulting in charges being filed, but they and their family are comforted knowing that ultimately the truth will come out,” said Mesereau, who represented Michael Jackson and Bill Cosby in their trials for sexual crimes.
Masterson, who is a member of the Church of Scientology, has previously said he was being persecuted because he belonged to the controversial group.
He also appeared in Netflix western sitcom “The Ranch” but was written out of the show.
In 2017, former Village Voice editor Tony Ortega reported at least three of the accusers claimed they were pressured to keep quiet by the Church of Scientology, to which they also belonged. The organization denied those claims.