Maricopa County has lost a bid to throw out an overhaul of then-Sheriff Joe Arpaio's internal affairs operations.
The overhaul was ordered by a judge who complained such investigations into officer wrongdoing were fraught with biased decision-making.
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that Judge Murray Snow didn't abuse his powers in ordering the 2016 overhaul.
The judge ordered the changes after he found Arpaio in civil contempt of court for disobeying a court order in a racial profiling lawsuit challenging his traffic patrols that targeted immigrants.
The lawsuit morphed into an examination of wrongdoing by employees, including allegations that some employees pocketed drivers' licenses and other items from people during traffic stops.