LA prosecutors create task force for Hollywood sexual assault claims
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The Los Angeles County district attorney announced plans on Thursday to assemble a special task force of "veteran sex crimes prosecutors" to handle sexual assault and harassment cases, amid ongoing investigations into high-profile Hollywood figures.

“In response to the widespread allegations of sexual abuse in the entertainment industry, I have established a task force of specially trained deputy district attorneys who are ready to evaluate these cases if any are referred to my office for criminal prosecution," District Attorney Jackie Lacey said in a statement.


Lacey said the task force is working alongside the Los Angeles and Beverly Hills police departments, but has not yet received any cases from law enforcement officials that could constitute criminal investigations.

The force will work to "ensure a uniformed approach to the legal review and possible prosecution," the district attorney said.

The Los Angeles Police Department is currently investigating allegations of rape and forced oral copulation against producer Harvey Weinstein in 2013 from an Italian actress and a lewd act in 2015, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Police are investigating allegations of sexual assault against director James Toback, while "Gossip Girl" actor Ed Westwick has also been accused of rape by two women.

The Beverly Hills Police Department also has open investigations into Weinstein and Toback, the Times noted. All three men have denied any wrongdoing.