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Ex-LA sheriff remains free while appealing conviction

FILE - In this May 12, 2017, file photo, former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca leaves federal court in Los Angeles after he was sentenced to three years in prison for obstructing an FBI investigation into abuses at the jails he ran. Baca will remain out of federal prison, at least temporarily, as he appeals his conviction for trying to derail an FBI investigation into abuses in the nation's largest jail system. Baca filed an appeal Friday, Sept. 8, 2017 with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal. He was due to surrender on Monday but the appeal triggers an automatic stay of that order. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca will remain out of federal prison — at least temporarily — as he appeals his conviction for trying to derail an FBI investigation into abuses in the nation’s largest jail system.

Baca filed an appeal Friday with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal. The 75-year-old had been told to surrender to federal officials on Monday but the filing triggers an automatic stay on that order.

The appeal comes after a lower court found Baca couldn’t prove he wasn’t appealing just to delay serving his sentence.

Last month, the appellate court refused to extend Baca’s bail while his conviction is appealed, which could take weeks or even months

Baca is facing a three-year sentence for conspiracy, obstruction of justice and lying to investigators.

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