Actor and Scientologist . All three of Masterson’s accusers were members of the Church of Scientology but have since left, and prosecutors said the organization protected Masterson from consequences for some two decades.
Masterson allegedly dosed his victims’ drinks with knockout drugs, then had his way with them. “They were raped, they were punished for it, and they were retaliated against,” Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Reinhold Mueller said in court. “Scientology told them there’s no justice for them.”
Masterson has insisted the encounters were consensual and his legal team told jurors during the trial to consider the possibility that the women had been motivated by “hatred, revenge, or money.”
Masterson, himself, didn’t take the stand in his own defense, and his legal team did not call any witnesses. Defense attorneys, however, tried to discredit the accounts of Masterson’s accusers as inconsistent and flawed.
After Masterson was convicted earlier this year, Scientology officials issued a statement calling portions of the trial testimony having to do with the organization “uniformly false.” In an emailed statement on Thursday, the Church of Scientology pushed back on allegations that it harassed Masterson’s accusers and dissuaded them from going to police, saying the organization “has no policy prohibiting or discouraging members from reporting criminal conduct of anyone—Scientologists or not—to law enforcement.”
“There is not a scintilla of evidence supporting the scandalous allegations that the Church harassed the accusers,” the statement said. “Every single instance of supposed harassment by the Church is FALSE, and has been debunked.”
Masterson’s lawyers asked that their client be allowed to serve both terms concurrently, for a total of 15 years. They appealed to Olmedo to take into account Masterson’s strong work ethic and real-life role as the father of a 9-year-old daughter.
According to the Associated Press, Olmedo instead gave Masterson a piece of her mind, saying, “Mr. Masterson, I know that you’re sitting here steadfast in your claims of innocence, and thus no doubt feeling victimized by a justice system that has failed you. But Mr. Masterson, you are not the victim here. Your actions 20 years ago took away another person’s voice and choice. One way or another you will have to come to terms with your prior actions, and their consequences.”
Masterson will be eligible for parole in 2048, at the age of 72.