It's bad enough that our government is now routinely spying on us. Now you can't even trust stuffed animals.
Last week, a Nebraska man sued his ex-wife, her father, and the woman's former law firm for allegedly hiding a recording device inside his four-year-old daughter's teddy bear in order to gather evidence to use in a custody battle. William Lewton, his daughter, "and five other plaintiffs who were recorded by the bear" are seeking damages for invasion of privacy and wiretapping.
According to the lawsuit, Dianna Divingnzzo had been awarded sole custody of the girl after the couple divorced, although it looks to me like Lewton got to keep about half of the vowels in her last name. Not content with that, Lewton was apparently seeking custody rights, and so I gather the bear was recruited to gather evidence during his visitations. Lewton's attorney said this week that it's believed the bear recorded "several hundred hours" of conversations between Christmas 2007 and May 2008.
The recordings were discovered in June when Lewton's attorney was given copies of them by Divingnzzo's attorneys. The latter contend, however, that they knew nothing about the bear being wired until their client presented them with the recordings. "We had nothing to do with [the ursine subterfuge]," said one of the attorneys representing the woman. "We did not advise her to do so."
The lawsuit follows a state court's ruling last summer in the custody case that the recording was a violation of Nebraska's wiretapping law, so the bear's intelligence was not admissible.
Link: AP via Findlaw.com