April 23, 2009

A Cyberstalking Fight [8:09 am]

A followup to an earlier post: A fighter, then victim, of cyberstalking, lawyer pushes to close loophole (pdf)

Joan Lukey, a prominent Boston lawyer who has fought cyberstalking and harassment in the courtroom, is fighting back at her own stalker.

The attorney at Ropes & Gray said she is being targeted by the same person who harassed - and continues to harass and threaten - her former client, author Patricia Cornwell. So Lukey is pushing to close what she believes are loopholes in federal law that prevent victims from tracking down their stalkers and holding them accountable.

Specifically, Lukey said plaintiffs in civil suits and victims of cyberstalking need to be able to identify their attackers and trace their whereabouts.

[...] With Lukey representing her, Cromwell sued Sachs for libel in Virginia, where both had previously lived. A federal judge ruled in 2007 that at least 45 of Sach’s statements were libelous and ordered him held in contempt of court.

But in defiance of the judge’s ruling, Sachs remains in an unknown location, attacking Cornwell, and now Lukey, on various websites. He has accused Lukey of being an anti-Semite out to persecute him and says she has worked with the CIA.

Cornwell’s civil judgment is still standing. The problem is, no one knows where Sachs is. And, Lukey said, federal laws restrict ways to find out.

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