The Latest: Trial of ex-Los Angeles sheriff goes to jury

AP News
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Posted: Mar 13, 2017 6:23 PM

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on the corruption trial of former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca (all times local):

3:20 p.m.

The fate of former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is now in the hands of a jury.

Jurors hearing the federal corruption case began deliberating Monday after the prosecution and defense delivered closing arguments.

Baca is accused of obstructing justice and trying to stymie an FBI probe into allegations of abuse at the county jail his agency oversaw.

Prosecutors allege Baca had his staffers hide an inmate who was acting as an informant for the FBI and tried to push federal officials to drop their investigation. He's also accused of lying to federal investigators.

Baca's attorney has argued there's insufficient evidence to prove his client is guilty.

Baca led the nation's largest sheriff's department for more than 15 years before resigning in 2014 amid allegations that jail guards took bribes, beat inmates and falsified reports.

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1 p.m.

An attorney for former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca has told a jury there's insufficient evidence to prove he's guilty of federal corruption charges.

Defense lawyer Nathan Hochman said in his closing argument Monday that Baca didn't obstruct justice or lie to federal investigators who were probing allegations of abuse in county jails.

Prosecutors allege the 74-year-old had his staff hide an FBI informant who was a jail inmate and lied to investigators.

His lawyer says there was no testimony that Baca gave any orders for his subordinates to obstruct the FBI.

Baca headed the nation's largest sheriff's department for more than 15 years before resigning in 2014 amid allegations that jail guards took bribes, beat inmates and falsified reports.

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10:30 a.m.

Federal prosecutors say there's direct evidence showing former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca obstructed an FBI investigation into corruption at the county's jails.

Prosecutors presented closing arguments Monday in Baca's trial.

They say the 74-year-old also lied several times to federal authorities in order to thwart the civil rights investigation.

Baca headed the nation's largest sheriff's department for more than 15 years before resigning in 2014 amid allegations that jail guards took bribes, beat inmates and falsified reports.

Prosecutors say Baca also knew two sheriff's sergeants threatened to arrest an FBI agent who was investigating the alleged abuse.

Baca's lawyer has begun the closing argument for the defense, which contends the former sheriff wasn't part of any conspiracy to obstruct justice.

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The federal corruption trial of former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is nearing an end.

Closing arguments are scheduled for Monday.

The 74-year-old Baca is accused of obstructing justice and lying to federal authorities to thwart an FBI investigation into civil rights abuses in the county jails his agency oversaw.

Baca headed the nation's largest sheriff's department for more than 15 years before resigning in 2014 amid allegations that jail guards took bribes, beat inmates and falsified reports.

An FBI agent testified that two sheriff's sergeants threatened to arrest her as she was investigating the alleged abuse.

Baca's lawyer has argued he wasn't part of any conspiracy to obstruct justice.