Tuesday, April 4, 2006
Director John McTiernan Charged With Lying to FBI, Becomes 14th Person Charged in Pellicano Scandal
From Staff and Wire Service Reports
Director John McTiernan was charged yesterday with making a false statement to the FBI about his knowledge of wiretapping by indicted Hollywood private detective Anthony Pellicano, authorities said.
McTiernan, 55, lied to federal investigators last month when he told them he had no knowledge of the wiretapping and had never discussed it with the private eye, according to an unsigned copy of an information provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
An information can only be filed with the consent of the accused, who thereby waives the right to have the case considered by a grand jury. Such waiver usually suggests that the defendant has reached, or is negotiating, a plea agreement.
Investigators contend McTiernan hired Pellicano to tap phone calls involving a man identified in the documents as Charles Roven. Roven, although not further described in the information, is also a producer/director, whose credited films include last year’s “The Brothers Grimm” and “Batman Begins.
McTiernan directed a number of films, including “Die Hard” and “The Thomas Crown Affair.”
He was charged with one count of making a false statement and could face a maximum sentence of five years in prison, if convicted.
A message left with John Carlton, McTiernan’s attorney, was not immediately returned.
Pellicano, who has worked for some of the biggest names in Hollywood, has been charged in a wiretapping scandal that has rattled entertainment and legal circles.
Prosecutors allege he wiretapped Hollywood stars he was hired to investigate, including Sylvester Stallone and others, and used the information for threats, blackmail and in some cases to help clients gain advantages in legal disputes.
The private detective is also accused of paying authorities to run the names of more than 60 people, including comedians Garry Shandling and Kevin Nealon, through government databases. Others, including a former Los Angeles police sergeant, have also been charged in the case.
Pellicano has pled not guilty to the charges.
McTiernan is the 14th person charged in the case. Four others have pleaded guilty to a variety of charges, including wire fraud and conspiracy.
Copyright 2006, Metropolitan News Company