Task Force Formed to Deal With Hollywood Sexual Assaults

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The Los Angeles County District Attorney is forming a task force to evaluate sexual assault cases in Hollywood.

Hollywood heavyweights Harvey Weinstein (left) and James Toback have both been accused of sexual assault. (Credit: DSK/AFP/Getty Images)
Hollywood heavyweights Harvey Weinstein (left) and James Toback have both been accused of sexual assault. (Credit: DSK/AFP/Getty Images)

“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,” Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said in a statement. “I have assigned the group of veteran sex crimes prosecutors to work together to ensure a uniformed approach to the legal review and possible prosecution of any case that meets both the legal and factual standards for criminal prosecution.”

Lacey added that to date, her office has not received any cases from law enforcement for possible criminal filing.

Last month, Los Angles police opened an investigation into Harvey Weinstein after a person came forward with an allegation of sexual assault against the disgraced movie mogul.

Weinstein, through his publicist, has repeatedly denied “any allegations of non-consensual sex.”

Police in Beverly Hills, California are looking into complaints involving Weinstein and director James Toback, separately.

The Los Angeles Times was first to report allegations of sexual misconduct by Toback, a screenwriter and director whose credits include “The Pick-up Artist,” and “Bugsy.”

To date, more than 300 women have contacted the Los Angeles Times via email and phone calls to accuse Toback of inappropriate conduct, according to Los Angeles Times writer Glenn Whipp.

When the story first broke, Toback’s agent, Jeff Berg, told CNN he would pass a request for a comment on to his client. Berg has since ceased representing Toback.

The director, 72, denied the allegations when contacted by the Times, the newspaper said.

Toback told the paper he had never met any of the women who came forward with allegations — or if he did meet them, it “was for five minutes and (he had) no recollection.”

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