Netflix has severed ties with Danny Masterson after the actor was accused by multiple women of rape. Masterson, who starred in the streaming service’s hit series “The Ranch,” blasted the allegations as “outrageous” and decried Netflix’s decision.
Netflix made the announcement on Tuesday after Masterson, a devout Scientologist, was accused of using his powerful position in the church to rape women who were also Scientologists and who were under pressure to not contact the police, The Daily Beast reported.
“As a result of ongoing discussions, Netflix and the producers have written Danny Masterson out of ‘The Ranch.’ Yesterday was his last day on the show, and production will resume in early 2018 without him,” read a statement from a Netflix rep.
Masterson will not be immediately purged from the show, however: he will still appear in the ten episodes that are coming out later this month and in multiple episodes that will air next year. Netflix has yet to determine whether Masterson will remain a producer on the show, a gig he currently holds alongside fellow “That ‘70s Show” alum Ashton Kutcher.
In a statement made via attorney, Masterson said he was “very disappointed in Netflix’s decision to write my character off of ‘The Ranch.’”
“From day one, I have denied the outrageous allegations against me,” he said. “I have never been charged with a crime, let alone convicted of one. In this country, you are presumed innocent until proven guilty. However, in the current climate, it seems as if you are presumed guilty the moment you are accused. I understand and look forward to clearing my name once and for all.”
Masterson is reportedly under investigation by the LAPD for “at least three alleged cases of rape or sodomy of women who were also Scientologists and who claim they were pressured by the Church of Scientology not to contact police or go public with their accusations.”
The LAPD confirmed an investigation into three sexual assault allegations that occurred in the early 2000s, but multiple outlets have reported that the department’s investigation has stalled, possibly due to interference by the Church of Scientology.