“The defense Danny has is robust,” a source tells Us Weekly exclusively. “And it should be pointed out the alleged victims are currently suing Danny for significant financial damages.”
Despite facing a maximum sentence of 45 years to life in state prison, if convicted for rape by force or fear of three women, the insider says, “Danny will not be accepting a plea deal, despite pressure he will get to take it. Period.”
The source adds: “It’s not a given that there will be a criminal trial. There are very strong grounds for the charges to be dismissed.”
The Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced the charges against the Ranch alum, 44, on Wednesday, three years after the he was first accused of sexual assault. He was arrested at 11:30 a.m. that day and released on $3.3 million bail.
The That ‘70s Show alum has been accused of sexually assaulting a 23-year-old woman between January and December 2001, a 28-year-old woman in April 2003 and a second 23-year-old woman between October and December 2003. Masterson’s arraignment is scheduled for September 18.
The New York native’s criminal defense attorney, Tom Mesereau, told Us in a statement on Wednesday that “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.”
Masterson’s accusers also released a statement to Us that read in part, “We are confident that the truth will be known and hope that the charges filed today are the first steps in this long journey of healing, justice and holding those that victimized us accountable.”
The King of Queens alum, who is a former Scientologist herself, commented on the practicing Scientologist’s actions on Twitter, writing, “This is just the beginning Scientology, your days of getting away with it is coming to an end! #justice #scientologytheaftermath.”
Masterson initially made headlines in March 2017 after multiple women came forward with claims against him. The Los Angeles Police Department confirmed to Us at the time that they were investigating the allegations against the Men at Work alum.
If you or anyone you know has been sexually abused, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). A trained staff member will provide confidential, judgment-free support as well as local resources to assist in healing, recovering and more.
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