The criminal case against 7 eBay employees charged in a bizarre cyberstalking and harassment campaign aimed at doxing and silencing critics of the company has come to an end with all defendants pleading guilty.
Ex-Security Manager Philip Cooke is the only defendant sentenced so far, with 18 months in prison followed by 3 years of supervised release with conditions, and a fine in the amount of $15,000 ordered by the court in July 2021 with sentence starting September 7, 2021
However, Cooke filed a motion for early compassionate release today, May 20, 2022, asking the court to reduce his sentence to time served and allow him to serve the remainder of his sentence in home confinement citing serious medical conditions and substandard/harsh conditions at Sheridan Federal Correctional Institution.
The 6 other defendants Jim Baugh, David Harville, Brian Gilbert, Stephanie Popp, Veronica Zea and Stephanie Stockwell are all still awaiting sentencing with Harville and Baugh set for September 2022 and the others to follow.
The civil case against the 7 named defendants, ex-CEO Devin Wenig, ex-Communications Chief Steve Wymer, Progressive F.O.R.C.E.Concepts, LLC and eBay Inc. is moving forward after the parties failed to reach a settlement during a 90 day stay in proceedings.
The plaintiffs, Ina and David Steiner who operate the Ecommercebytes blog, filed the case July 21, 2021 after being targeted by a systematic campaign of stalking and intimidation aimed at changing the tone of their coverage on eBay and the ultimate goal to offer assistance with the harassment as part of a White Knight strategy to earn goodwill so they might help eBay learn the identity of unsuckEBAY/Fidomaster, an anonymous online persona who posted critical comments about eBay on their blog and Twitter.
According to the most recent filing, Plaintiffs and eBay engaged in mediation on April 14, 2022 but did not reach an agreement on resolution of the matter either in whole or in part.
The Steiner's attorney requested an extension to file opposition to the motions to dismiss which was granted and that filing is now due on May 23, 2022. Defendants will then have until June 6, 2022 to file responses to the opposition.
Defendant Jim Baugh also filed a cross-claim against eBay in this matter and eBay's response to that cross-claim is due on or before May 26, 2022.