Special task force to tackle Hollywood sexual abuse allegations, DA says

A special task force is being created to deal with the widespread allegations of sexual abuse in the entertainment industry, the Los Angeles District Attorney said Wednesday.

"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 noted that while so far the district attorney's office has not received any cases from law enforcement for possible criminal filing, they are working with the Los Angeles and Beverly Hills police departments.

Allegations of sexual abuse have roiled the entertainment industry in the past few weeks since movie mogul Harvey Weinstein was first accused of sexual harassment and sexual assault. The entertainment industry has been struggling to catch up as allegations have piled up against Weinstein, Amazon's Roy Price and actors such as Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Piven, Ed Westwick and Louis C.K.

For example, Weinstein has been fired from the company he co-founded, The Weinstein Company, and has been expelled by the  Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The NYPD and the LAPD are investigating sexual assault claims made against Weinstein.

Spacey has been cut from an upcoming Carol Burnett project and his scenes in the upcoming film "All the Money in the World" will be reshot with actor Christopher Plummer, even though the movie had already wrapped filming and the trailer released. The upcoming season of "House of Cards" has been suspended, and Netflix has said it will only go through with the planned sixth season if Spacey is not involved.

And Price, who was the head of programming at Amazon Studios, resigned last month after allegations that he sexually harassed a producer.