Man Admits Recording Celebrities’ Call


A photographer who intercepted a phone call from actress Nicole Kidman to her husband, actor Tom Cruise, and peddled the recording to the tabloids pleaded guilty Friday to a federal wiretapping charge.

Eric Ford, 27, of Studio City admitted that he had used an illegally modified police scanner to deliberately intercept a Feb. 5, 1998, call Kidman made to her husband from her car phone, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.

Federal law forbids intercepting such information, and the crime becomes a felony if the interception is done for commercial gain. Officials said Ford faces up to 14 months in jail.


Ford disclosed the information to News of the World, a London tabloid, and he sold the story for an undisclosed amount last June to the Globe, a tabloid based in Boca Raton, Fla., according to prosecutors.

The recorded conversation purportedly included a squabble.