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Danny Masterson delays motion to dismiss, and other recent mysteries for Scientology celeb

 
Hey, what’s Danny Masterson up to lately as he awaits trial on rape charges that could put him in prison for the rest of his life?

According to his Instagram account, he’s been enjoying summer weather with a frolic in the pool, as you can see above. But as always we’ve been keeping an eye on various court dockets to get some idea of what he and his legal team are up to.

First, we will remind you that the last time we saw Masterson, at his June 7 arraignment in Los Angeles following a brutal four-day preliminary hearing in May, his attorneys had discussed with the court the idea that he would be filing a motion to dismiss all charges against him.

As a result of the preliminary hearing, Judge Charlaine Olmedo had found there was enough evidence to hold a criminal trial and tentatively scheduled it for November. But then at the June 7 arraignment, with Judge Eleanor Hunter sitting in, Masterson’s attorneys Tom Mesereau and Sharon Appelbaum said they were planning on filing a “995” motion, and Judge Hunter asked for them to schedule it for August 9, when another hearing was already on the calendar.

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Out in the hallway, prosecutor Reinhold Mueller told reporters that a 995 is a motion to dismiss based on lack of evidence at the preliminary hearing. And judging by how much Judge Olmedo seemed impressed with the testimony by the three victims at that hearing, we figured the motion would be a bit of a formality.

We’re bringing it up now because as the August 9 hearing approaches, during which several motions (including our own) will be heard in an attempt to quash subpoenas served by Mesereau, we wondered about that motion to dismiss: Where was it? Our media contact at the court told us that no motion has been filed.

As far as we can tell then, the only thing being considered at Monday’s hearing will be the motions to quash Mesereau’s subpoenas. The motion to dismiss has been put off.

Why? Our legal experts point out that Masterson can wait to file it, closer to the trial, and so even if it is a bit of a formality and is likely to be denied, there would be greater potential for it (and any expected appeal) to delay the trial itself. Clever.

OK, so that’s the latest from the court as we know it. What else is going on with Masterson?

Well, since Yashar Ali’s brilliant reporting resulted in Danny losing his job acting in the Netflix series The Ranch, we’ve wondered what the That ’70s Show actor might be doing to set up another career, as it were. We knew that he’d moved to a property in the wine-growing town of Santa Ynez in Santa Barbara County, and a photo last year captured him showing some friends his vineyard.

A source tipped us that Danny has been working with friends to create a “natural wine” company making “orange wine,” which is wine that gets its color not from orange fruit but from a process of keeping fermenting grapes in with skin and seeds.

And sure enough, in September, the Fallen Grape Wine Company was formed in New York and with a headquarters in Buellton, California, and its registered agent is none other than Danny’s brother-in-law, restaurateur Paul Longo, who recently married Danny’s sister, The Walking Dead actress Alanna Masterson.

According to Fallen Grape’s nascent website, it’s sourcing its grapes for its natural wines from, you guessed it, Santa Ynez.

 

 
We’re sure the marketing is going to be off the hook. After all, buying a drink from Danny Masterson after the testimony that came out at the preliminary hearing? Yikes.

But hey, wait a minute. How is Danny getting something like this going if his he’s still having those house problems we were reporting earlier?

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If you remember, we pointed out that since foreclosure moratoriums in place for the pandemic were coming to an end, Danny’s quixotic lawsuits over his Hollywood Hills home made it vulnerable. And that was dicey for him because it was one of two homes that he’d put up to guarantee the $3.3 million bond that’s keeping him out of custody while he’s awaiting trial.

Well, it turns out Danny had some help there, too.

On June 16, a deed of trust filed with Los Angeles County shows that Danny received a $550,000 loan secured by his Hollyridge Drive home, which should just about allow him to keep the bank at bay.

And who would loan Danny a cool half million on a house that was in the middle of a bizarre legal fight? According to the filing, Danny’s angel investor was named “Veracity LLC,” with a San Marino address.

And who’s that?

Well, you may remember our previous story about how Danny’s stepfather, Rusty Tweed, got himself banned for life from selling securities after the SEC accused him of running a Ponzi scheme. Well, in the filings Tweed made during that fiasco, here’s what he disclosed about Veracity LLC, that it’s essentially his own personal piggybank:

 

 
Well, we have to hand it to Danny. How many other people, facing the potential of life in prison for drugging and raping three women, would be posting images of fun in the pool, getting involved in a new wine venture, and getting bailed out of financial trouble with help from the parents?

What a life.

 
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Source Code

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“Dianetics has probably got more history per square inch connected with it than any other activity that’s ever occurred on this planet. The planet has really never recovered from the impact. That’s the truth of the matter. Along about ’51 or something like that I stopped shoving Dianetics as such, you see, why it sort of left the missing step at the bottom of the steps, you know, sort of feeling. It gives very definite, if somewhat superficial, clues to human behavior. I say somewhat superficially —it’s hilarious, you know, sometimes, somebody trying to find his aberrations in this lifetime. This poor bloke that just went on a mad jihad or amok —that’s the word. The Malays go amok. And we had an American university boy go amok the other day and got up in the tower of the University of Texas and slaughtered a lot of people with rifles and that sort of thing. It was interesting to me that he’d just been to see a psychiatrist. Told the psychiatrist all about it, that he had impulses to do it and so forth. And the psychiatrist said, ‘Good boy.’ And the fellow didn’t turn up for his next appointment. The psychiatrist never much bothered about it and then he went out and killed about 39 people or, I don’t know what the figure was, 14 or something like that. But it was interesting to me just as a little side comment, that if you read carefully into such cases — movie star commits suicide — just been to see a psychiatrist.” — L. Ron Hubbard, August 4, 1966

 
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Avast, Ye Mateys

“Since Lisbon our rudder has not reached its extreme swing. It gave trouble after the auto pilot was connected. When we disconnected the auto pilot the helm would not turn completely. It has only been partially corrected. As it is limited the ship does not steer well and three times has gotten us near real trouble. This is a dangerous situation.” — The Commodore, August 4, 1969

 
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Overheard in the FreeZone

“The hiring of the doppelganger was originally in agreement with LRH: To take over some administrative tasks and also as a host so that LRH could concentrate on his research, writing and C/Sing etc. I got told by some oldtimer that there where two different LRH-bodies on the ship: A smaller and thicker one and a tall one. Both were seen by him at the same time: One in the cabin and one holding a lecture on deck. And two sets of similar clothes and shoes in two different sizes. The doppelganger can be around on the ship and MSH or kids would not object as they are in on this scam, told that the true LRH is somewhere else in hiding for security reasons or on some important mission. So they – and perhaps some close friends – knew about that and kept it a secret, because revealing that would create bad PR for LRH. Thus it might be true that Janis Grady really did believe she was talking with LRH, when she was handled by the double. So it might really be that most of the CMO, WDC and even RTC guys know nothing about the takeover and the influence by intelligence, they just have been hired and went to the Apollo since 1972 and ‘worked close to LRH.’ When the idea hits them that they have been part of a takeover plot by the Deep State, this is such an overwhelming overt they will swear that this was not so. Everyone who found that out by accident was begged not to reveal this secret to safeguard the PR and security of LRH. Only Quentin seems to have found out the truth and it cost him his life.”

 
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Past is Prologue

1996: Paulette Cooper reported this week on the death of Bob Kaufman, author of ‘Inside Scientology,’ at age 63. “Bob was the first person courageous enough to reveal the upper level materials. For this, he was terribly harassed and his dreams of a concert piano career shattered. When he gave a recital at Little Carnegie Hall more than 20 years ago, the Scientologists found out in advance and called the ticket taker and told them to tell people he was ill and the concert was canceled. Almost everyone was turned away, and as Bob looked out at an almost empty audience, and realized what must have happened, he lost it and his fury crept into his music. Later, the Times review would complain that he played as if he was angry. He was also an extraordinary friend to many anti-Scientologists, including myself, Monica, Nan McClean, John Atack, Roy Wallis (when he was alive), Margie Wakefield, and others. I would download whatever humor I could find from a.r.s., and I would sing often these songs to him, or read him the funny anti-Scientology posts that you all wrote. And that’s how several of you really cheered him terrifically during his many surgical procedures, hospitalizations, setbacks, and chemo. So thank you all for him. He really loved it.”

 

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Random Howdy

“He needs to do a comeback flick, something full of pathos that will tug at people’s heartstrings like ‘Fresh Prince: Down and Out In Bel Air’.”

 
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Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for August 9. Trial tentatively scheduled for early November.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff’s sentencing to be scheduled.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Pretrial conference August 21 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for Sept 9.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30, 2020 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Petition to US Supreme Court submitted on May 26. Scientology responded on June 25.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: California Supreme Court granted review on May 26 and asked the Second Appellate Division to direct Judge Steven Kleifield to show cause why he granted Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Oral arguments scheduled for Oct 5.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Dec 17: Feshbachs sign court judgment obliging them to pay entire $3.674 million tax debt, plus interest from Nov 19.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 23. Appeal hearing scheduled for Aug 23-27.

Concluded litigation:
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29. Bond revoked Sep 14. Nobbe dead, Sep 14.
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe dismissed the lawsuit on May 15 after the Clearwater Police dropped their criminal investigation of her allegations.

 
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THE PROSECUTION OF DANNY MASTERSON

We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links, including our four days in Los Angeles covering the preliminary hearing and its ruling, which has Danny facing trial and the potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison.

SCIENTOLOGY: FAIR GAME

After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.

LEAH REMINI: SCIENTOLOGY AND THE AFTERMATH

An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.

SCIENTOLOGY’S CELEBRITIES, from A to Z

Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

 
Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society. Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in a weekly series. How many have you read?

 
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THE WHOLE TRACK

[ONE year ago] Leah Remini podcast: The ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’ episode that never aired
[TWO years ago] Scientologist-led anti-vaxx ‘Conscience Coalition’ is off to a humble start
[THREE years ago] Ron Miscavige: ‘When I look back, it reminds me of stories I heard of the Stasi in East Germany’
[FOUR years ago] Almost four years after its grand opening, a new look inside Scientology’s ‘Super Power’
[FIVE years ago] Nancy Cartwright’s ‘defense’ of Scientology is the saddest thing ever
[SIX years ago] London! And a member of government asks us, what can we do about Scientology?
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology’s newest testimonials video is everything you want it to be
[EIGHT years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology Puts the Fun in Fundraising!
[NINE years ago] Chick Corea, Heber Jentzsch, Ingo Swann, and Scientology’s 1977 OT Summit!

 
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Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 2,382 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,887 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,407 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,427 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,318 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,625 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,493 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,267 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,597 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,071 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,387 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,953 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,872 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,040 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,621 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,882 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,920 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,633 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,158 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 513 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,688 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,239 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,388 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,708 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,563 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,682 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,038 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,341 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,447 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,849 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,721 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,304 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,799 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,053 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,162 days.

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Posted by Tony Ortega on August 4, 2021 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2020 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2020), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists | GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice | SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts | Shelly Miscavige, 15 years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele

 

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