Pellicano Part II: Government Kicks Off Terry Christensen Trial With Detailed Memo

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Pellicano Part II: Government Kicks Off Terry Christensen Trial With Detailed Memo

Tue Jul 15, 2008 @ 06:26PM PST

Posted by Matthew Belloni

Christensenterry Hope you enjoyed the intermission. Just when we'd all put the whole Anthony Pellicano trial circus behind us, tomorrow brings jury selection in the second act.

For those with short memories, Hollywood PI Pellicano was convicted back in May of 78 felonies encompassing everything from RICO to possession of C-4 explosives. But the government's not done yet. Pellicano now stands trial with Terry Christensen, name partner at Century City's Christensen Glaser and the only lawyer to be charged with a crime stemming from Pellicano's vast web of Telesleuthing. The government estimates a four-week trial over Christensen's alleged consipiracy to wiretap in connection with litigation over client Kirk Kerkorian's child support payments to his ex. 

Which means that today we've been treated to the government's opening brief, a brisk 85-page novella detailing highlights from 6 1/2 hours of "34 recovered Pellicano-Christensen recordings" that show Christensen allegedly receiving mountains of privileged information on Lisa Bonder Kirkorian from Pellicano wiretaps.

Christensen, well-known in entertainment litigation circles, has pleaded not guilty. His lead defense lawyer is longtime partner Patty Glaser, who also has vigorously defended his innocence. But these transcripts in the government brief are pretty damning, especially the detailed discussions of Bonder Kirkorian's litigation strategy. Some highlights:

Let's pick up the action as Pellicano is allegedly urged by prominent divorce lawyer Dennis Wasser to call Christensen to discuss the parameters of how he will wiretap Bonder Kirkorian. From the transcript:

Pellicano: I'm gon--I'm gonna be feeding you information that you'd never get in a million years.

Christensen: Let me, let me, um yeah...because I wanna be real clear with you because um, you and I have known each other for a long time but as you say, we have never worked together.

Pellicano: Yes, sir.

Christensen: So when you say it's only between you and I, I mean I'm not talking to Dennis or anybody about this.

Pellicano: I jus--I heard you.

Christensen: Okay.

The government brief then describes Pellicano's alleged recountings to Christensen of conversations between Bonder Kirkorian and her attorney, Harlee Gasmer: 

Pellicano: So, so Lisa kept saying, well she says, then she thinks I'm a liar, right? She thinks I am a liar? And Harlee goes no, she didn't say you were a liar. Cut it out. But she didn't believe you. (laughter) She didn't believe you but she didn't call you a liar. (laughter)

The discussions of privileged communications go on and on. Christensen and Pellicano also allegedly chat at length about billionaire Steve Bing, the alleged biological father of Bonder Kirkorian's child, and how to "dirty up" Bonder Kirkorian through a negative publicity campaign.

Read the full transcript here in pdf form and the government's indictment here, also in pdf form.

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The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. blog focuses on how the entertainment and media industries are impacted and influenced by the law. It is edited by Matthew Belloni with contributions from veteran legal reporter Eriq Gardner and others. Before joining The Hollywood Reporter, Belloni was a lawyer at an entertainment litigation firm in Los Angeles. He writes a column for THR devoted to entertainment law. Gardner is a New York-based writer and legal journalist. Send tips or comments to Matthew.Belloni@thr.com

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