Lawyer might be tried with Pellicano
EmptyEntertainment attorney Terry Christensen's hopes of being tried separately from former celebrity sleuth Anthony Pellicano could be dashed.
On Monday, Pellicano and the U.S. Attorney's Office filed a stipulation agreeing that the former private eye should be tried with Christensen when Pellicano's current trial on racketeering and wiretapping charges concludes.
Christensen and Pellicano have been charged with conspiracy to intercept and interception of wire communications in connection with the alleged wiretapping from March to May 2002 of Lisa Bonder Kerkorian, the ex-wife of billionaire Kirk Kerkorian. Christensen represented Kirk Kerkorian in a child-custody dispute with his ex. Both men have pleaded not guilty to the charges.
In February, as the trial against Pellicano, Christensen and four others inched closer to a start date, the Los Angeles lawyer won his bid to be tried separately. U.S. District Court Judge Dale Fischer agreed with Christensen that the evidence against him, if correct, involved only two of the 111 counts charged in the government's indictment.
Fischer ordered that Christensen's trial start 30-45 days after Pellicano's current trial is over.
If Fischer grants the agreement between the government and Pellicano, it means Christensen will have to share a courtroom with the former private investigator, who by then could be a convicted wiretapper and racketeer.
In the meantime, Christensen filed a motion last Friday to enjoin the Huffington Post's Allison Hope Weiner from uploading many of the taped conversations between Pellicano and his many clients (without their knowledge). Many of the tapes have been played in open court, while others have not, including a conversation between Pellicano and rocker Courtney Love.
The tapes were part of a protective order that kept them from the public. Christensen wants Weiner to turn over all the recordings to the court and tell who leaked them to her. Although Weiner is not part of the protective order, whoever leaked the tapes to her is, the lawyer contends, and is in violation of the judge's order.
A source said Weiner will be served with the motion today at the courthouse where she is covering the trial.
The trial against Pellicano and four others — including a former client, an ex-police officer, a phone company employee and a computer engineer — entered its 16th day Wednesday with the government playing what they said was a wiretapped conversation in which the wife of a billionaire businessman reassured her brother-in-law that their affair wouldn't be discovered.
It will be the only alleged wiretapped conversation played for the jury, prosecutors have said.
The 25-minute recording is of Lisa Gores and her husband's brother Tom Gores talking about their 2001 meeting at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Lisa Gores feared they were followed to one of the hotel villas.
"I'm not going to ever say anything unless I'm confronted," said Gores, who at the time was married to Alec Gores. "I'll just deny everything forever."
Later she said, "This is the bottom line, Tommy, no one saw inside the room. End of story."
Asked whether he was worried, Tom Gores said he was OK.
"I don't want you to have pressure on you," he said. Gores' other brother is Paradigm Talent Agency head Sam Gores.
The five defendants have all pleaded not guilty. In all, 14 people have been charged in the case, and seven already pleaded guilty to a variety of charges including perjury and conspiracy.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.