LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, who withdrew his guilty plea to a charge of lying to federal investigators in a corruption probe, was indicted on Friday on three new criminal counts, prosecutors said.

Baca, who pulled out of a plea agreement with prosecutors this week after a judge ruled that the recommended six-month prison term was too lenient, could face a maximum of 20 years in prison if convicted on all three counts handed down in a U.S. District Court grand jury indictment.

Those counts include conspiring to obstruct justice, obstruction of justice and lying to the federal government.

Both prosecutors and defense lawyers have cited the 74-year-old Baca's recent Alzheimer's disease diagnosis in their reasoning for a seeking a relatively light sentence.


Baca served as the top elected law enforcement official in Los Angeles for 15 years before retiring in January 2014 amid a federal investigation of inmate abuse and other wrongdoing, including cover-up attempts, at two downtown lockups.

He pleaded guilty in February to a charge of making false statements to investigators when he asserted in 2013 that he had no prior knowledge of his deputies' efforts to harass a Federal Bureau of Investigations agent and thwart a criminal probe of his department.

(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by G Crosse and James Dalgleish)

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