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Pellicano Trial: FBI Experts, Computer Hacking And Crazy Cross Examination


When Chad Hummel, attorney for Sgt. Mark Arneson, got a chance to cross-examine LAPD Detective Lim, he managed to cast a bit of doubt on the government's contention that Mr. Arneson personally used the LAPD computers to look up criminal and DMV information on a large number of Mr. Pellicano's targets. Mr. Hummel raised the possibility that someone else might have been using Mr. Arneson's serial number and "sparky" password when he noted that on at least one occasion, Mr. Arneson supposedly made data base inquiries on himself and his wife. Mr. Hummel also established that there were several other LAPD officers who conducted data base inquiries on Anita Busch as well as on Kissandra Cohen, an attorney that Mr. Pellicano is alleged to have wiretapped. But when Mr. Lally stood up again for re-direct, he asked Detective Lim if there was any other LAPD officer who on May 16, 2002 ran inquiries on former N.Y. Times' reporters Anita Busch and Bernard Weinraub and James Casey (a plaintiff in a lawsuit filed against Michael Ovitz.) Detective Lim replied that no other LAPD officers, besides one who signed in with Mr. Arneson's serial number and password, conducted such an inquiry. But, it still left open the door for the possibility that other officers in the LAPD were involved in inquiries on at least a few of Mr. Pellicano's major targets.

The rest of the day was devoted to testimony from the government's F.B.I. computer expert who spent one very long hour talking about how he'd obtained data from Mr. Pellicano's computers. Thee F.B.I. expert, who'd flown out from F.B.I. computer secret headquarters in Virginia, seemed well cast for his role as a computer guy. He was sporting a gray suit, gray hair, glasses and a blank expression. It was difficult to hear him when he spoke, despite the fact that he was sitting on top of a microphone. But, the fact that he was almost inaudible didn't stop Mr. Pellicano from listening attentively, often scowling or looking confused by the agent's testimony. Mr. Pellicano looked extremely excited about the chance to once again unleash his newly acquired super power--super-slow and incredibly confusing cross-examination questions.

When it was time for the defense to cross-examine, Mr. Pellicano announced that he'd prefer to start his cross-examination of this witness on Tuesday--giving both Mr. Saunders and Mr. Lally the weekend to try and find some defense against Mr. Pellicano's new found superpower. Given Mr. Pellicano's enthusiasm and tremendous knowledge of computers, it's likely that he's going to give the F.B.I. expert a thorough going-over. We got a glimpse this afternoon, when Mr. Pellicano agreed to start his cross-examination with a few general questions designed to show that a.) the F.B.I. witness knows nothing about computers and b.) Mr. Pellicano is a computer genius who should be working for the government.

Although Tuesday's court testimony is going to feature a lot of computer related testimony, several other witnesses are scheduled to testify including some from the John Gordon Jones' matter who were allegedly targeted by Pellicano as well as a former Pellicano employee, Lily LeMasters. And then, the government is also expecting to finish up the testimony of Asst. Prosecutor Karla Kerlin.... There are some interesting witnesses coming up that the government hasn't announced yet... so stay tuned. They may end up making a surprise appearance. Read all of HuffPost's coverage from inside the Pellicano courtroom.