Victims lash out at Hollywood private investigator

December 14, 2008 1:09:00 PM PST
Victims of former Hollywood private eye Anthony Pellicano say they have never been able to free themselves from the emotional and financial fallout caused by crimes he committed while wiretapping the rich and famous. A former reporter says she has nightmares about being hunted and raped. A mother says her daughter is mocked by other kids and their parents. An actress who once appeared in a popular television series says she has found little work since.

They are among the victims who have submitted letters to the federal judge who is scheduled to sentence Pellicano on Monday. The former private investigator is already in custody since being convicted of a total of 78 counts, including wiretapping, racketeering and wire fraud, in two separate trials earlier this year.

Federal prosecutors have recommended in court documents that Pellicano, 64, serve nearly 16 years in prison for running a criminal enterprise and for becoming a "high-priced thief who fraudulently obtained prominence through the harm that he wantonly inflicted on others."

People on the receiving end of Pellicano's skullduggery could speak at the sentencing, but prosecutors declined to say who might show up.

Their letters give a glimpse into the anger, disgust and hardship his victims have faced since Pellicano combed through their lives.

Former Los Angeles Times reporter Anita Busch says she no longer is a journalist and has nightmares about being hunted because of the harassment she faced from Pellicano. Busch found a dead fish with a rose in its mouth on her car, along with a sign reading "stop," in June 2002 after she wrote a series of unflattering articles about one-time superagent Michael Ovitz, a Pellicano client.

"People do not matter to him," Busch said of Pellicano in her letter. "The law does not matter to him. The judicial system - which he and others have abused - doesn't matter to him."

Lisa Bonder Kerkorian, former wife of billionaire Kirk Kerkorian, said her privacy has been destroyed. Prosecutors said Pellicano and Kerkorian's attorney, Terry Christensen, bugged her phone conversations to disprove her claims that the MGM mogul was the father of her young daughter. DNA tests later showed movie producer Steve Bing was the biological father.

Christensen was convicted in August of one count of conspiracy to commit wiretapping and was sentenced last month to three years in prison.

Bonder Kerkorian said her daughter has been "stripped of the emotional stability" she once had and has difficulty forging relationships. "She has faced cruel comments, sly whispers, and been openly ridiculed by students and parents at her school," she wrote.

Linda Doucett wrote that she has been unable to work as an actress and support herself and her son since taking part in a lawsuit filed by her former boyfriend, comedian Garry Shandling, against his former talent manager, Brad Grey, now the head of the Paramount studio. Pellicano worked for Grey on the suit.

Doucett, who was a regular in Shandling's "The Larry Sanders Show," said Pellicano tracked her down after she moved to Riverside County, east of Los Angeles. In late 2003, she said, she received a call threatening her son's safety from someone she presumed to be Pellicano. Prosecutors never proved who placed the call.

In her letter, Doucett said she felt safe from Pellicano for the first time when she testified at his trial. She wrote that she was joined in court by her son, who asked: "That lady in the black robe is going to help us, huh Mom?"

"Finally, I could answer yes," Doucett wrote.


Load Comments