In a case where the main players are all current or former members of the Church of Scientology, Danny Masterson, a former star of the enduring comedy “That ’70s Show,” will soon go up against three women who claim he sexually assaulted them two decades ago.

The 46-year-old Masterson’s Los Angeles trial could start with opening remarks as early as Tuesday, and while the judge has stated her determination to prevent the church from becoming the focal point of the proceedings, it will unavoidably loom big.

Before the trial, be aware of the following:

Danny Masterson: Who is he?
Masterson played Steven Hyde from 1998 to 2006 on Fox’s “That ’70s Show,” which made stars out of Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, and Topher Grace and will soon have a reboot on Netflix with “That ’90s Show.”

On the Netflix sitcom “The Ranch,” Masterson and Kutcher had reconnected, but the show was canceled in December 2017 as a result of an LAPD investigation that had been made public in March 2017.

One of the first Hollywood celebrities to face charges in the #MeToo era was the actor. Around the time of the fifth anniversary of the allegations against Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, which elevated the #MeToo movement to a global reckoning, a number of high-profile sexual assault cases went to trial. One of them is his.

Just down the hall from Masterson’s is Weinstein’s second rape and sexual assault trial; he has already been found guilty in New York. Actor Kevin Spacey and screenwriter and director Paul Haggis, who are both being sued for sexual assault, have opened their civil trials in New York.

what is Danny Masterson being accused of?
Three counts of rape by force or terror are the charges against Masterson, and if found guilty, he may spend up to 45 years behind bars. The alleged incident allegedly occurred between 2001 and 2003 with three ladies in his home, which served as a gathering spot for people when he was at the height of his fame. Masterson has entered a not-guilty plea to the accusations.

A longtime girlfriend of Masterson’s had been one of the ladies. She stated during the preliminary hearing held last year that she woke up to Masterson raping her one night in 2001, five years into their relationship.

Another witness, a former acquaintance of Masterson’s who was raised in Scientology, claimed that in 2003, he had led her upstairs from his Los Angeles home’s hot tub and sexually assaulted her there.

The third woman said that Masterson texted her to come to his residence on a night in 2003 and then raped her there. She claimed to have established limits and made it clear that there was to be no sex.

As does Masterson now, all three were members of the Church of Scientology. The three accusers, all of whom have since left the organization, claimed that they were first hesitant to approach authorities because the religion insisted that issues involving fellow members be resolved privately.

In 2004, Masterson’s friend made a police report that didn’t result in charges because she was dissatisfied with how the Scientology ethics board handled her complaint about him. She got in touch with the lady who claims she was raped while dating Masterson in 2016 and exchanged experiences with her. That year, each would submit a police complaint. Masterson’s ex-girlfriend claimed that she made the decision after telling her husband about the incident and getting his support in realizing that she had been raped. In 2017, the third woman contacted the police.

What role does Scientology have in the trial?

Speaking during a preliminary hearing to decide whether Masterson should go to trial last year, witnesses frequently used terminology from the Scientology movement, which attorneys had to ask them to clarify. And the church, which has a considerable presence in Los Angeles and has counted many renowned persons among its followers, is represented by a large number of current and past members on the list of witnesses in the trial.

At a pre-trial hearing, Superior Court Judge Charlaine F. Olmedo stated, “This is not going to turn into a trial on Scientology.” She did, however, say that she would allow discussion of the delay in the women reporting to the police.