LOS ANGELES—On Wednesday, February 23, jury selection began for the re-trial of former Los Angeles County Sheriff Leroy David “Lee” Baca, with the process expect to last until the end of the week.  Jurors will remain anonymous throughout the process because of media attention to the case.

Baca was almost acquitted in December 2016 during the initial trial, which the jury failed to reach a unanimous verdict. By a 11-1 margin, the jury had declared Baca not guilty of the charges he was facing. The sole jury member forced U.S. District Judge Percy Anderson to order a mistrial.

Baca is facing up to 20 years in prison with three felony charges levied against him that include conspiracy to obstruct a federal grand jury investigation, obstruction of justice and a new charge of making false statements. Assistant United States Attorney Brandon Fox added the charge because of accusations that Baca lied during the first trial to avoid being prosecuted. He is alleged to have ordered his subordinates to thwart a federal investigation into widespread abuse and corruption within county jails. The charges stem from August to September 2011 where Baca is accused of conspiracy to commit, and committing obstruction of justice.

Baca’s  former undersheriff, Paul Tanaka, along with eight other deputies, are currently serving prison terms after being convicted in the case. Tanaka was second-in-command to Sheriff Lee Baca. In 2011, the allegation made against Tanaka was orchestrating a scheme to derail an FBI jail investigation by intimidating a lead agent in the case, pressuring deputies not to cooperate with the investigation, and concealing the whereabouts of an inmate who was working as a federal informant. Tanaka was sentenced to 5 years in federal prison.

“The truth is that the crimes charged in this case were planned, directed and carried out by Leroy Baca, the former Sheriff for the County of Los Angeles,” wrote Attorney H. Dean Steward in the memo. “None of this would have happened if Baca had simply cooperated with the FBI at the beginning.”

Baca stepped down from his position in 2014. In March 2016, Baca admitted to the charge that he had lied to the federal investigators. He was able to make a deal with prosecutors to get no more than six months in prison. He maintains that he had no idea about any of the illegal activity occurring during his time as sheriff.

Written By John Broadway and Casey Jacobs