Danny Masterson‘s rape case has taken a turn, with an attorney for the actor alleging that members of law enforcement leaked information pertaining to the case.
According to reports, a hearing for Masterson’s criminal case was held on Wednesday, where his attorney, Tom Mesereau, alleged to the judge, “This is a high profile case and we think that information has been leaked to the press.”
The Daily Mail reports that Mesereau suggested the leaks may have come from cops or the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office. Assistant Los Angeles District Attorney Reinhold Mueller denied the claim.
“The People wholeheartedly object to suggestions of leaking. There is no evidence to support that,” Mueller reportedly fired back.
Actor Danny Masterson appears at his arraignment in Los Angeles Superior Court in Los Angeles, Calif. on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020.
(Lucy Nicholson/Pool Photo via AP)
Mesereau and the LA DA’s office did not immediately return Fox News’ requests for comment. Masterson did not appear in court for Wednesday’s hearing.
Masterson is facing three charges of rape by force or fear, stemming from incidents that reportedly occurred in the early 2000s. In January, the actor pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Prosecutors have alleged that Masterson, 44, who has been free on bond since his June 17 arrest, raped a 23-year-old woman sometime in 2001, a 28-year-old woman in April of 2003, and a 23-year-old woman between October and December of 2003. All of the alleged rapes happened at his Hollywood Hills home.
Mesereau, whose previous clients have included Michael Jackson and Bill Cosby, said in court last June that the charges were the result of unfair hype from media outlets and political pressure to prosecute his client. The lawyer said his team would prove that Masterson is not guilty.
If convicted, Danny Masterson could face up to 45 years in prison.
Masterson could face up to 45 years in prison if convicted.
His arrest came after a three-year investigation that resulted in the rare prosecution of a famous Hollywood figure in the #MeToo era. Despite dozens of investigations, most have led to no charges based on lack of evidence or too much time having passed since the alleged sexual assaults.
The alleged rapes happened at the height of Masterson’s fame as he starred as Steven Hyde on “That ’70s Show” from 1998 to 2006.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.