Former Scientologist Leah Remini ripped into the organization anew even as she expressed how "relieved" she was that "dangerous rapist" Danny Masterson has now been sentenced to 30 years to life.
Leah Remini quickly weighed in after That 70s Show alum Danny Masterson was sentenced to 30 years to life for two counts of forcible rape, expressing her relief that the actor will be behind bars and outrage at Scientology.
“Sitting in court today with the women who survived Danny Masterson’s predation was a surreal experience,” Remini wrote in a lengthy statement on X (formerly Twitter). “Over the past seven decades, former Scientologists have sadly become used to Scientology using its financial resources, religious protection and relationships to snatch justice away from them.”
Danny Masterson Rape Victims Call Him 'Pathetic, Disturbed and Extremely Violent' In Court Ahead of Sentencing
She alleged that Masterson “avoided accountability for his crimes” for more than two decades with the assistance of Scientology’s “intelligence agency” and other members of the organization, all the way up to its leader, David Miscavige.
“I am relieved that this dangerous rapist will be off the streets and unable to violently assault and rape women with the help of Scientology, a multi-billion-dollar criminal organization with tax-exempt status.”
Remini was in the courtroom on Thursday when Masterson was sentenced. He was convicted on two counts of forcible rape in May with the jury hung on a third count for incidents dating back to the early 2000s, while Masterson was still starring on That 70s Show.
Nevertheless, Masterson’s attorney remain confident that they can still get his convictions overturned on appeal, per TMZ. One of his attorneys, Shawn Holley, told the outlet that Masterson’s team has found errors in the case they believe led to an incorrect verdict.
Why Simon Pegg Doesn't Ask Tom Cruise About Scientology
“Though we have great respect for the jury in this case and for our system of justice overall, sometimes they get it wrong. And that’s what happened here,” said Holley. “Mr. Masterson did not commit the crimes for which he has been convicted and we — and the appellate lawyers — the best and the brightest in the country — are confident that these convictions will be overturned.”
After sitting in the courtroom, Remini wrote that she was deeply impacted by the victims’ impact statements, referencing both the crimes Masterson has been convicted of and “the very Scientologists who terrorized them over two decades.”
“These women not only faced the living hell of being raped, having their rapes covered up by the very organization that promised to protect them, but they have also faced ruthless and criminal harassment by Scientology and its agents since they came forward to law enforcement,” she added.
Leah Remini 'In Tears' Over NYU Acceptance, Says Scientology and Family 'Didn't Value' Education
The King of Queens alum has long been an outspoken critic of Scientology, even going so far as to blast the organization in her 2016 memoir and subsequent own television series, Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath. The organization has blasted her right back, denying all of her claims against it.
In response to Masterson’s conviction, and again after his sentencing, Scientology released a statement received by Us Weekly. “The prosecution’s introduction of religion into this trial was an unprecedented violation of the First Amendment and affects the due process rights of every American,” the statement read.
“There is not a scintilla of evidence supporting the scandalous allegations that the Church harassed the accusers,” the statement continued. “Every single instance of supposed harassment by the Church is FALSE, and has been debunked.”
Jenna Elfman Makes Rare Statement on Scientology: 'Controversy is Boring'
You can read Remini’s full statement below.
My statement on the sentencing of Scientologist Danny Masterson: “Sitting in court today with the women who survived Danny Masterson’s predation was a surreal experience. Over the past seven decades, former Scientologists have sadly become used to Scientology using its financial resources, religious protection, and relationships to snatch justice away from them.
For over two decades, Danny Masterson avoided accountability for his crimes. While Danny was the only one sentenced, his conviction and sentence are indictments against Scientology, its operatives, and its criminal leader, David Miscavige.
Scientology managed to cover up Danny’s crimes with the help of its intelligence agency, the Office of Special Affairs, top “church” officials like Kirsten Caetano Pedersen and Julian Swartz, its network of media-hungry unethical attorneys, private investigators, agents, and civilian Scientologists who engaged in a conspiracy to cover up crimes of sexual violence.
I am relieved that this dangerous rapist will be off the streets and unable to violently assault and rape women with the help of Scientology, a multi-billion-dollar criminal organization with tax-exempt status.
Hearing the survivors read their victim impact statements aloud in court while the man who raped them and some of the very Scientologists who terrorized them over two decades were just a few feet away displayed a level of bravery that I am in awe of.
These women not only faced the living hell of being raped, having their rapes covered up by the very organization that promised to protect them, but they have also faced ruthless and criminal harassment by Scientology and its agents since they came forward to law enforcement.
I will always remind the public that in Scientology if you report another Scientologist to law enforcement, you are committing a high crime. The consequences of such a high crime are devastating: you will lose everything you’ve ever known, from your family to your friends to your job.
The women who survived Danny’s predation fought tirelessly for justice. Their tenacity, strength, and courage have given hope to all victims of Scientology that justice is possible. For that, we will forever be grateful.
To the LAPD detectives, the LA District Attorney’s office, Judge Olmedo, and the jury, we thank you for your fair and impartial approach to this case and trial.”
Source: Read Full Article