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Reality TV millionaire Michael Bernback "vindicated" after rape charges dropped

An LA court dropped all charges against the 65-year-old businessman who appeared on 'Millionaire Matchmaker' in 2011.
UPDATED JAN 23, 2020
(Source: Getty Images)
(Source: Getty Images)

Michael Bernback can finally rest easy after a Los Angeles court dismissed all sexual assault charges levied against him on Tuesday.

Bernback, 65, is a businessman who appeared on an episode of reality TV show 'Millionaire Matchmaker' in 2011.

He was initially charged with crimes allegedly committed against three women between March 2014 and August 2015, according to the Los Angeles Patch.

Bernback was charged with eight felonies including forcible rape, administering a drug with the intent to commit rape and rape of an unconscious person in 2015, according to the LA Times.

However, the charges involving one of those women were dropped at an earlier hearing.

He had declared his net worth to be over $8 million during his appearance on the Bravo TV show. The assaults were allegedly committed at the businessman's home in Sherman Oaks.

"Mr Bernback maintained his innocence from the start. His attorneys presented evidence to prosecutors that contradicted the claims of his accusers and requested that the Los Angeles District Attorney undertake a thorough re-examination of the case, initially investigated by the LAPD," Bernback's defence attorney Blair Berk said.

"It is now clear that Mr Bernback should have never been arrested and charged. Moving forward, Mr Bernback will attempt to regain his reputation and put this terrible ordeal behind him."

Berk also said that Bernback had been "vindicated" by the court decision. The Los Angeles District Attorney's office released a statement that the case was dismissed at the request of the defense after the prosecution announced that they were unable to proceed with a hearing to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to send Bernback to trial.

According to Los Angeles Police Lt. Jim Gavin who led the team that investigated the case, Bernback contacted women online for S&M relationships. Once a woman arrived at his home, however, Bernback allegedly engaged in sexual acts that were far more violent than what had been agreed upon.