BRAND NEW ON E!
Paris Hilton and Fred Durst are together again--if only for purposes of a Secret Service investigation.
The hacking of Hilton's T-Mobile Sidekick and the purloining and posting of Durst's for-his-eyes-only sex video are both under investigation by federal agents, who believe the two incidents are linked.
News of the twin Secret Service probes came to light in a lawsuit filed last Wednesday by Durst against Websites and Internet providers that linked to the sex tape.
"Basically, the purpose of the lawsuit was stop people from exploiting [this private tape] between Fred and his girlfriend," Durst attorney Edwin F. McPherson said Monday. "We want to make clear to the world that this is not him trying to sell this."
According to the lawsuit, posted in its entirety on the Smoking Gun, Durst's camp was contacted last December by the unidentified owner of a porn-video company about a sex tape starring the Limp Bizkit frontman and a former girlfriend. The exec, believed to be celebrity sex-tape broker David Hans Schmidt, who is now cooperating with authorities investigating the heist, wanted to know if Durst was interested in releasing the tape commercially.
Durst rejected the offer and felt confident he had the only copy of the tape tucked away safely on his personal computer, the lawsuit said. But on Feb. 25, a few days after the Hilton case broke, clips from the Durst video made their way to Web.
Durst, who is not a T-Mobile subscriber, originally believed the incidents were unrelated. The only thing he could think of at the time, McPherson said, was that his computer had been tapped into when he brought it in for servicing.
The lawyer wasn't certain exactly how the virtual break-in of Hilton's T-Mobile led hackers to Durst's computer, although the Hilton case did compromise the privacy of more than a dozen notables, including the rapping rocker. (Per a hacked 2004 text message from Durst to Hilton, the heiress was "[his] heart.") Ashlee Simpson, Lindsay Lohan and Nicole Richie, Hilton's Simple Life costar, were others who had cell numbers and other information outed by the Hilton scammers.
Secret Service Agent Lorie Lewis said Monday that government investigators could not comment on an "ongoing investigation."
While the feds hunt down the hackers, the Durst lawsuit seeks temporary restraining orders against sites that linked to footage of the "very private, intimate bedroom [moments] between two former lovers."
"This video was never intended by either participant to be shown, marketed, sold or distributed to the public," the lawsuit said.
According to the complaint, the tape was shot in 2003 by Durst, who "set up the camera angle and position, turned on the camera and held the camera throughout the recording of the video."
Gawker Media, which runs the Manhattan-centric gossip blog, Gawker.com, was named a defendant. In a post addressed to Durst, the site said, yes, it did share with the world a link "to a video of your penis."
But the link only stayed up "for about two hours," Gawker.com said. "Then we wept, found God, took a hot bath and removed the video from our site," the site said.
McPherson said the timing of when the video was, or wasn't up, on Gawker and other sites was being looked into. But he said, "We wouldn't have sued if it was already down."