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Texas father in child custody dispute sues ex for wiretapping

A Texas father is suing his ex-wife claiming she secretly intercepted his communications with his son and his family. It is no secret that child custody disputes can be one of the most acrimonious aspects of divorce however, it is never a good idea to resort to potentially illegal means to try and obtain custody of your kids.

According to sources, the father is claiming his ex-wife illegally recorded conversations by sewing a tiny recording device into the 9-year-old's clothing. The lawsuit also accuses the mother of downloading the recorded conversations onto a computer and claims she may have shared them with others. The suit was filed in Houston Federal Court by the father and several of his family members are also named as plaintiffs in the suit. They are each seeking more than $10,000 in damages.

The suit claims both state and federal wiretapping laws were violated in the illegal recordings, as well as invasion of privacy and the intentional infliction of emotional distress. Last year, the father filed suit to gain sole custody of his son. Although the current suit does not state when the recordings were made, the attorney for the plaintiffs stated he expects to uncover the dates, times and places of the recordings as the case develops.

The attorney has successfully tried a similar case regarding the illegal recording of conversations in a custody dispute. In that case the recorder had been sewn into a teddy bear. The recording devices are getting smaller and smaller and the one sewn into the child's jeans in this latest case was the size of a USB thumb or flash drive. Sources claim the defendant in the case is a private investigator and may be familiar with such devices.

The problem with surreptitiously planting such recording devices is you do not have any control over the conversations and participants you are recording. In this particular case, some very private conversations were recorded violating several different parties' right to privacy.

Source: The Houston Chronicle, "Pasadena man's lawsuit claims ex-wife planted recorder on son," Mike Tolson, April 18, 2012

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