Producer Files Alarming Stalking Complaint

     LOS ANGELES (CN) – Movie producer Marianne Maddalena claims in court that an ex-boyfriend hacked into her email, assaulted, defamed and stalked her and impersonated her in emails, making a wreck of her personal and professional life.
     Maddalena sued Derrick John Toole in Federal Court.
     Maddalena worked with fellow producer Wes Craven on several movies, including “Scream.” She was also a producer for “Music of the Heart,” “Red Eye,” and “Last House on the Left,” among others.
     Toole is a felon who pleaded guilty to computer fraud and illegal wiretapping in November 2012, and is out on probation, Maddalena says in the complaint.
     Maddalena claims Toole “used surreptitious software and other manipulative technology to start to spin a web of deceit, defamation, interference, trespass, and mind games and spun that web around the heretofore peaceful and happy life and career of plaintiff, turning her life and business career into one of self doubt, anxiety, worry fear utter confusion and great stress.”
     Maddalena says she became romantically involved with Toole in 2007 and dated him “on and off for several years.” They did not live together. Maddalena says she “perceived herself to be in a loving, safe and enjoyable relationship,” and that she “never consented to her personal or work computers or phones or car being secretly accessed by Mr. Toole, or for him to intercept her emails, data, and other sent or stored electronic communications or database searches through use of hidden spyware.”
     The complaint adds: “Mr. Toole was also using this spyware to steal plaintiff’s log on passwords and user names and starting to falsely depict himself as her in writing emails, other electronic messages, and texts to family members, friends and co-workers, with the intent to say false and materially untrue things to them, to cast plaintiff in a false light, and to either push these third parties out of her life or to otherwise interfere with these relationships. Upon information and belief, Mr. Toole also secured access to Ms. Maddalena’s bank accounts and related information.”
     Maddalena claims Toole installed Spectorsoft Eblaster spyware on her laptop and configured it to send him reports of all her emails, passwords, the sites she visited, and who she talked to on chat and in instant messages. She says she didn’t know about the spyware because she had no spyware detection software on her laptop “because she had never had [sic] allowed entry into her life by a person who violated her privacy.”
     She claims the spyware compiled more than 7,000 reports for Toole that detailed her private personal information.
     Maddalena claims Toole installed Spector Pro on her desktop computer at work in March 2012 and compiled reports of all her work-related correspondences.
     She claims Toole printed out many of the reports and hid them in “a blue plastic ‘tub’ like container at his home” so she wouldn’t see them when she visited. “Within that tub of stolen electronic communications … were such things as email messages, attached documents, bank statements of plaintiff, other of her financial records, and even copies taken through this spyware of her phone bills,” the complaint states.
     Maddalena claims Toole used the reports to take notes about who she talked to on the phone and by text, email and social media. He tracked where she went through a tracking device he installed under her car’s rear bumper, she says in the complaint.
     Toole then “began to literally map out the persons with whom she was visiting for personal or work reasons, and then he would … look up his research on them,” the complaint states. “Then, he was poised to go through all his stolen user names and passwords and begin to interfere with these people and their dealings with plaintiff.”
     Maddalena claims Toole impersonated her to her friends, family and co-workers: “He portrayed her falsely in all of them [his correspondences] and depicted her in words that lied about her state of mind toward them and which portrayed her as not caring, and wanting them out of her life or business. He also sent family members Ms. Maddalena’s private and personal emails sent to others in confidence to embarrass and mortify her and others. He uttered other defamatory statements about Ms. Maddalena to various persons and called into question her moral turpitude, falsely,” the complaint states.
     Maddalena says she thought she was going crazy as her friends, family and co-workers started treating her differently, breaking off contact, and knowing private things she had never told them.
     She claims she had a breakthrough in January 2011 when she “received a reply to an email that she knew without a doubt she had not sent – before defendant could either intercept it and delete the reply email and his forgery of the original email in the chain, or divert it, or cause her to believe she had sent the email to which the reply was sent,” the complaint states.
     Maddalena says she hired computer techs to scan her computer for spyware and they found the eBlaster program. She claims Toole admitted to some of his misdeeds when she confronted him about the spyware, but threatened to reveal sensitive information if she filed charges against him. He also threatened her loved ones and continued harassing and stalking her, the complaint states.
     At that point, Maddalena says, she hired an attorney, who contacted the FBI. After the FBI found more spyware on her laptop, they served a search warrant on Toole’s house and found the plastic tub “full to the brim” with the reports he’d printed out, according to the complaint.
     Maddalena says that having her identity “hijack[ed]” by Toole destroyed many of her working and personal relationships, warped her into an anxious, paranoid and untrusting person, and caused her lose thousands of dollars in income by damaging her professional reputation.
     She seeks an injunction, “several hundred thousand dollars” in compensatory damages, and punitive damages for violations of federal cybercrime laws, intentional infliction of emotional distress, trespass, defamation, assault, battery, stalking, false light, public disclosure of private facts, and other offenses. She also wants reimbursement for psychological counseling and medical expenses.
     She is represented by Gerard P. Fox.

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