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Danny Masterson denied bail after rape conviction

Judge cited his ongoing divorce from Bijou Phillips as one of the reasons

Maanya Sachdeva
Thursday 25 January 2024 09:59 GMT
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Danny Masterson has been denied bail pending appeal over fears the convicted rapist has “every incentive to flee”.

The former That ‘70s Show star 47, was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison after he was found guilty of raping two women over two decades ago.

On Wednesday (24 January), Los Angeles Superior Court judge Charlaine Olmedo – who sentenced Masterson last September – wrote that Masterson “will likely remain in custody for decades and perhaps the rest of his life” if his conviction and sentence are upheld on appeal, in an order obtained by Deadline.

In the order, judge Olmedo cited Masterson’s ongoing divorce from Bijou Phillips as one of the reasons for not granting him bail, explaining he has “no wife to go home to” and “every incentive to flee”.

“In light of the fact that defendant has no wife to go home to, defendant now has every incentive to flee and little reason to return to state prison to serve out the remainder of his lengthy sentence should his appeal be unsuccessful,” she noted.

The Independent has contacted Masterson’s lawyers for comment.

Last December, Masterson was sent to North Kern State Prison in California to serve out his lengthy sentence following the dual rape conviction. According to state laws, he will be eligible for parole in 20 years.

Shortly after he was sentenced, Phillips – who remained by Masterson’s side through the court proceedings – filed for divorce, ending their nearly 12-year marriage.

They were married in 2011 after meeting at a Las Vegas poker tournament in 2004. Their daughter, Fianna, was born in 2014.

Phillips is the daughter of The Mamas & The Papas musician John Phillips and his third wife, Geneviève Waïte.

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Masterson with his estranged wife Bijou Phillips (Invision)

An attorney for the Almost Famous actor told TMZ: “Ms Phillips has decided to file for divorce from her husband during this unfortunate time. Her priority remains with her daughter.

“This period has been unimaginably hard on the marriage and the family. Mr Masterson was always present for Ms Phillips during her most difficult times of her life.

“Ms Phillips acknowledges that Mr Masterson is a wonderful father to their daughter.”

Masterson, who rose to fame for playing Steven Hyde in the Nineties sitcom starring Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher, was found guilty of two counts of forcible rape by a jury of seven women and five men after a week of deliberations in May last year.

While handing down the sentence on 7 September, judge Olmedo said: “Mr Masterson, you are not the victim here. Your actions 20 years ago took away another person’s choice and voice. Your actions 20 years ago today were criminal, and that’s why you are here.”

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