LOS ANGELES (CN) – Anthony Pellicano, the snoop for the stars, was convicted Thursday of 76 of 77 racketeering and wiretapping charges, for wiretapping friends and enemies of his celebrity clients. The federal jury also convicted four co-defendants, including a former police detective.
The 6-year investigation of Pellicano began after an entertainment journalist was threatened for writing less than complimentary articles about super-agent Michael Ovitz. Pellicano and his creatures were found to have tapped the phones of a slew of Hollywood stars, some of whom were victims of his illegal snooping. Others profited from it, but none of Pellicano’s co-defendants were famous.
Marc Arneson, a former police sergeant, was convicted of racketeering, conspiracy, wire fraud and taking bribes to use law enforcement computers for Pellicano’s illicit purposes.
Former telephone company worker Rayford Earl Turner was convicted of 17 counts, including conspiracy, wiretapping and racketeering.
Kevin Kachikian, a computer programmer, who was accused of building Pellicano’s wiretapping stuff, was convicted of conspiracy and possessing a wiretapping device, but acquitted of nine counts of wiretapping.
Abner Nicherie was convicted of aiding and abetting wiretapping.
Pellicano faces up to 20 years in prison for one racketeering count – plus the 75 other charges – at his Sept. 24 sentencing.