The Prisoner


James Masterson has spent six years in an Illinois prison even though he has not been convicted of or pleaded guilty to a crime. Heck, he's not even an "enemy combatant" or terrorist. Masterson was charged with attempted aggravated sexual assault and indecent solicitation in 1997, after allegedly giving a prostitute a letter offering to sleep with her 12-year-old daughter. If he'd been convicted of that crime, he could have been sentenced to up to five years in prison. Instead, in 1999, a judge ruled him a "sexually dangerous person," allowing him to be held indefinitely until he has "recovered." Illinois officials say they are unsure how many people are being held under the act, but the legislature earlier this year made it tougher for those imprisoned under the law to appeal their sentences.