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LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Starting Monday, Los Angeles County's court system is set to expand audio and video court appearances to all 250 criminal courtrooms.

The Webex service -- which had been in place in 32 courtrooms throughout the county -- will be available in each criminal courtroom at nearly two dozen courthouses, according to the court.



"The court has prioritized and expedited remote appearance options throughout the nation's largest trial court system to achieve social distancing and to provide safe, convenient alternatives to in-person court appearances during the COVID-19 pandemic,'' Presiding Judge Kevin C. Brazile said in a statement released by the court last week. By next month, Webex and LACourtConnect, the court-developed remote appearance solution, will be available in all litigation types throughout the court.''

Authorization of audio and video appearances will be at the judicial officer's discretion pursuant to emergency rules from the California Judicial Council, according to the court.

Webex links will be provided to the prosecution and defense for use by clients who are not in jail, according to the court. Attorneys from the Public Defender's Office, Alternate Public Defender's Office and private attorneys will make the requests to judicial officers to appear via Webex, according to the court.

The courtwide expansion of audio and video appearances -- part of the court's Here For You Safe For You plan -- is intended to offer alternatives to in-person court appearances during the coronavirus pandemic.

The presiding judge ordered the courts to substantially scale back operations in mid-March to comply with state and county public health directives to try to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The above video is from a related story.

City News Service contributed to this report.

News Source: abc7.com

Tags: court court case according to the court

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FBI conducting criminal investigation into Hunter Biden and associates days ahead of 2020 election: Report

The FBI reportedly has an active criminal investigation into Hunter Biden, the son of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, and his associates.

James Rosen, a reporter with the Sinclair Broadcast Group, tweeted on Thursday, less than a week until Election Day, that the bureau opened the inquiry into allegations of money laundering in 2019.

"EXCLUSIVE: A @TheJusticeDept official confirms that in 2019, the @FBI opened up a criminal investigation into 'Hunter Biden and his associates,' focused on allegations of money-laundering, and that it remains open and active today," he said.

EXCLUSIVE: A @TheJusticeDept official confirms that in 2019, the @FBI opened up a criminal investigation into "Hunter Biden and his associates," focused on allegations of money-laundering, and that it remains open and active today. More very soon on your @WeAreSinclair stations.

— James Rosen (@JamesRosenTV) October 29, 2020

In recent weeks, details of Hunter Biden's foreign business dealings have made their way into the public eye, raising concerns about possible corruption and national security issues for him and his father, who leads in most national polls in the presidential contest against President Trump.

Materials tied to Hunter Biden, including from a laptop and hard drive that purportedly belonged to him, were given to the bureau last year.

The elder Biden, a former vice president, has denied having any involvement in foreign business ventures with his family. However, neither Joe Biden nor his son have denied the authenticity of the computer materials, and a former business partner of Hunter Biden, Tony Bobulinski, claims Joe Biden was involved and documents back up his claims.

John Solomon, an investigative journalist who founded Just the News, said on Fox Business on Thursday that "there is activity, I’m aware of some activity of the FBI contacting witnesses, talking to people" related to the Hunter Biden materials.

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