With true crime paying dividends for many media outlets of late, A+E Networks is pushing deeper into the space, investing in a new legal venture with media figure Dan Abrams.

A+E Networks

The programming partnership and investment will see a rebrand of Abrams’ website and live-streaming trial and law network, LawNewz.com, and the LawNewz Network, which will now be known as LawAndCrime.com and Law & Crime Network. The two entities, already connected through Live PD, a live cop show hosted by Abrams on A&E, will collaborate on live trial coverage as well as new original documentary programming.

“We are thrilled that A+E Networks will be helping us expand our distribution to every OTT platform, upgrade our programming capabilities and create first-to-market native advertising opportunities and events,” said Abrams, whose current role as ABC News’ chief legal analyst was preceded by legal reporting stints on NBC and Court TV. “With the enormous popularity of true-crime programming and the interest in legal stories increasing exponentially in the past few years, what better way to follow these stories then to watch the trials live as they actually happen?”

The Wall Street Journal, citing an unidentified source, said the deal valued the live trial site, which launched in March, at $15 million. The investment will be targeted to the legal properties and not apply to the rest of Abrams Media, whose assets include Mediaite and TheMarySue.com.

“A+E Networks has a long legacy as a leader in true-crime and justice programming,” said Rob Sharenow, President of Programming for A+E Networks. “We are looking forward to partnering with Dan and his team to create new and innovative trial programming to further super-serve our viewers’ demands for more in-depth true-crime coverage and analysis.”

Law&Crime will continue to be led day to day by Editor-in-Chief Rachel Stockman. The network’s lineup of anchors have media backgrounds, with appearances on CNN, HLN, Fox News, ABC, CBS and the like.