“Tell Him I Killed the Fucking Baby!”

“Bring me the father. Bring me the father’s head on a platter. Because there is like more than a hundred thousand in it for you, okay?” Thus spake über attorney Terry Christensen in 2002 as he hired super sleuth Anthony Pellicano to discover the true paternity of the daughter of Christensen’s client, billionaire Kirk Kerkorian.

Today, as Christensen and Pellicano began trial on two federal counts apiece of wiretapping and conspiracy, the men’s phone conversations, secretly recorded by Pellicano, were splashed across a courtroom screen. Already the trial is shaping up as a battle of transcripts and how to interpret them -- the above quote was offered by Christensen’s defense.

Pellicano was convicted in May of 76 felony counts involving wiretapping, conspiracy and racketeering. Early this morning he was brought from his downtown Los Angeles prison cell to be tried with Christensen in a case stemming from the down-and-dirty child-support battle involving Kirk Kerkorian, his daughter Kira and Kira’s mother, ex-tennis pro Lisa Bonder Kerkorian. In her opening statement, Christensen lawyer Patty Glaser immediately tossed Pellicano a lead lifesaver by announcing that Christensen – a partner in Glaser’s very own firm of Christensen, Glaser, Fink, Jacobs, Weil and Shapiro -- had never hired Pellicano to wiretap anyone and that throughout the pair’s business relationship Pellicano had conned her colleague on behalf of another client of Pellicano’s -- film and real estate mogul Steve Bing. (Although DNA eventually established that Bing was Kira Kerkorian’s father, his head never arrived on a platter or on anything else at the Century City offices of Christensen, Glaser, Fink, Jacobs, Weil and Shapiro.)

For 100 minutes Glaser quoted Christensen to show how clueless he was to Pellicano’s illegal wiretapping activities. If Christensen sounded rough, however, his words were no match for quotes Glaser provided from Lisa Bonder.

“When that motherfucker calls,” Bonder was quoted on Glaser’s PowerPoint screen, “tell him I killed the fucking baby! The baby is dead!”

Some may put Bonder’s outburst down to postpartum depression, but later Glaser quoted her as calling a lawyer and telling the attorney she was on her way to Kerkorian’s home to kill him.

“We will show that Lisa Bonder had threatened violence against Mr. Kerkorian and her own daughter,” Glaser told jurors. “And I mean violence-- the K Word. To kill.”

It was only 9:15 on the morning of the first day of a trial that promises to be one very bumpy ride -- and a lesson in what happens when too much money mixes with sex, megalomania and digital technology.


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