Ashton Kutcher steps down from his anti-child sex abuse organization Thorn and apologizes again for writing letter of support for rapist Danny Masterson: ‘It was an error in judgement’
- Kutcher and his wife Mila Kunis wrote letters to attest to Masterson’s character
- They said he was ‘honest’ and had kept Kutcher away from drugs
- They have been hit with a tidal wave of backlash ever since
Ashton Kutcher has stepped down from the anti-child sex abuse organization he co-founded and is apologizing again for the ill-advised letter of support he wrote for his convicted rapist friend Danny Masterson.
In a letter to the organization Thorn, Kutcher said the letters that he and wife Mila Kunis wrote were an ‘error in judgement’.
‘Victims of sexual abuse have been historically silenced and the character statement I submitted is yet another painful instance of questioning victims who are brave enough to share their experiences.
Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis in their video apologizing for supporting rapist Danny Masterson
Ashton Kutcher’s letter to the board of Thorn, a charity he founded to prevent child sex trafficking, that was published on Friday
‘After my wife and I spent several days of listening, personal reflection, learning, and conversations with survivors and the employees and leadership at Thorn, I have determined the responsible thing for me to do is resign as Chairman of the Board, effectively immediately.
‘I cannot allow my error in judgment to distract from our efforts and the children we serve,’ he wrote.
The stars were hit with a tidal wave of backlash after their letters calling Masterson an ‘honest’ man were made public.
They did nothing to sway the judge. Masterson was jailed for 30 years.
Kutcher was a vocal advocate for the organization, appearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to attest to the horrors of child sex trafficking that he had been exposed to through his work with the charity.
They met Masterson on That 70s Show. In an apology video posted on social media, the pair said they’d reflected on their support of Masterson and now realized it was ill-advised
Kutcher testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on behalf of Thorn, the organization, in 2017
They met Masterson on That 70s Show.
In an apology video posted on social media, the pair said they’d reflected on their support of Masterson and now realized it was ill-advised.
Masterson, a Scientologist, long denied his victims’ allegations.
All three of his accusers were former members of the church.
He was found guilty of raping two women.
Throughout the trial, he enjoyed the support of his wife – actress Bijou Phillips.
Masterson with wife Bijou Phillips in 2015. She stood by him throughout his trial
Friends who spoke with People magazine this week say she has ‘no plans’ to divorce him.
Kutcher’s resignation was welcomed by the board at the charity.
‘For the past decade I have worked with Ashton on child protection issues. He has been a strong champion for children and worked tirelessly to protect them from sexual abuse.
Through the creation of the DNA Foundation that later became Thorn, he helped build the organization into a major global resource for law enforcement, tech companies and others in the fight against child sexual exploitation.
He made a difference,’ Thorn board member Ernie Allen said in an announcement on the organization’s website.
Another said: ‘His unwavering dedication and commitment to Thorn throughout its journey have enabled the organization to become the leader that it is in the child safety ecosystem.
‘It has been my privilege to join him on this mission.’
In letters to the court before his sentencing, Masterson’s victims described how he drugged then attacked them.
‘I still don’t recall what I wore out the door, [defense attorney] Mr Cohen. But I do know one thing you didn’t ask me… I never could find my underwear.
‘I know this because when I got home, I didn’t have any on.
‘And I remember being upset and embarrassed about the idea that my underwear were somewhere at Danny’s house,’ one of the victims wrote.
In his letter to the judge, Kutcher said Masterson had ‘always treated people with decency’.
Kunis wrote: ‘I am writing this character letter on behalf of my dear friend, Danny Masterson, with whom I have had the privilege of sharing a significant part of my life.
‘My name is Mila Kunis, and I am an actress, and I believe it is essential to share the remarkable influence Danny has had on my life and the lives of others.
‘Throughout our time together, Danny has proven to be an amazing friend, confidant, and, above all, an outstanding older brother figure to me. His caring nature and ability to offer guidance have been instrumental in my growth both personally and professionally.
‘In conclusion, I wholeheartedly vouch for Danny Masterson’s exceptional character and the tremendous positive influence he has had on me and the people around him. His dedication to leading a drug-free life and the genuine care he extends to others makes him an outstanding role model and friend.
‘Please feel free to reach out if you require any further information or clarification.’
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