Private eye promises 'discomfort' for stars who testify against him

Private investigator Anthony Pellicano, who is acting as his own attorney in his federal wiretapping case, says he may cause some fidgeting in the witness stand if any of his former Hollywood A-list clients decide to testify against him.

Jury selection began yesterday in a case that has Hollywood's power players nervous about who else might be charged and what secrets might be exposed.

Since his indictment more than two years ago, the crafty, private eye has refused to divulge sensitive information about his rich and famous clients.

Mr Pellicano said he will not violate anyone's confidence but that celebrities who testify against him could face a rough time during cross-examination.

"I'm not going to willfully hurt anyone," Mr Pellicano told The Associated Press during a recent telephone interview from federal prison in Los Angeles. "But I might ask questions... that might make people uncomfortable."

In court documents filed on Friday, federal prosecutors laid out much of their trial strategy. They portrayed Mr Pellicano, 63, as an ambitious investigator-to-the-stars who ran a criminal enterprise that included wiretapping phones and bribing police and telephone workers to get the "gold standard" of confidential information for his clients.

He is accused of charging at least $25,000 (£12,500) for dirt that could be used to gain an edge in divorce and business disputes. Some of the information even involved rape and murder cases, according to the court documents.

Prosecutors estimate that Pellicano, retired Los Angeles police sergeant Mark Arneson and former telephone company employee Rayford Earl Turner collected nearly $2m from what authorities called a racketeering scheme. For the most part, however, prosecutors failed to determine that Mr Pellicano's clients were aware of the illegal methods he used.

Prosecutors have said those targeted included Sylvester Stallone and the comedians Garry Shandling and Kevin Nealon.

It was unclear whether any of them would testify since prosecutors won't file a list of possible witnesses until the trial begins. Stallone told reporters last month that he would be willing to testify, even though he had not yet been subpoenaed.

Despite having a treasure trove of Hollywood secrets, Mr Pellicano said he will not reveal them.

"There are a lot of celebrities' secrets I still hold and I haven't broken a vow, even to the people I don't like," he said. "If I was going to say something, I would have said something a long time ago."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

MBDA UK Ltd: Electronic Sub-System Design Verification engineer

Flexible working, annual bonus, pension & more.: MBDA UK Ltd: What’s the oppor...

MBDA UK Ltd: Test Systems Architect

Competitive salary & benefits: MBDA UK Ltd: What’s the opportunity? MBDA has e...

MBDA UK Ltd: Test Systems Design Engineer

Competitive salary & benefits: MBDA UK Ltd: What’s the opportunity?MBDA has en...

MBDA UK Ltd: PCB Technologies Engineer

Competitive salary & benefits: MBDA UK Ltd: What’s the opportunity?MBDA has en...

Day In a Page

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor