Listen Live

Highly ranked former employees of eBay, an online retailer portal, have been charged with cyberstalking and harassing a Natick, Massachusetts, couple for a newsletter they published, which criticized the company.

According to Boston’s WFXT, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said the harassment included sending threatening messages, surveillance of the couple and packages sent to the couple that contained live cockroaches, a funeral wreath and a bloody pig mask.

James Baugh, 45, and David Harville, 48, are the top suspects charged in connection with the scheme, according to the FBI.

Baugh, who lives in San Jose, is a former senior director of safety and security for eBay. He has been charged with conspiracy to commit cyberstalking and conspiracy to tamper with witnesses.

1272577223799824385

Harville, who lives in New York, is a former director of global resiliency for eBay. He has been charged with conspiracy to commit cyberstalking and conspiracy to tamper with witnesses.

In a release, federal investigators also listed co-conspirators who have been charged in connection with the scheme. They included the following:

  • Stephanie Popp, 32, former senior manager of global intelligence;
  • Stephanie Stockwell, 26, former manager of eBay’s Global Intelligence Center;
  • Veronica, Zea, 26, former eBay contractor who worked as an intelligence analyst in the GIC;
  • Brian Gilbert, 51, a former senior manager of special operations for eBay’s Global Security Team.

According to the release, the campaign began in August 2019 after the Natick couple published an issue of their newsletter containing an article about a lawsuit against eBay. That’s when, officials said, the company’s executive leadership team sent messages to one other saying it was time to “take down” the newsletter’s editor.

FBI investigators said the eBay team sent the couple a preserved fetal pig, a bloody pig Halloween mask, a funeral wreath and a book on surviving the loss of a spouse. Investigators said the group also ordered pornography addressed to the newsletter’s editor but had it delivered to their neighbors.

The FBI said the executives also messaged the couple via Twitter private messages and became increasingly threatening.

“What it [sic] going to take for you to answer me, guess I’m going to have to get your attention another way [expletive],” one of the messages said, according to the FBI.

A second part of the harassment, according to the FBI, was to send Brian Gilbert, a former Santa Clara police captain, to contact the couple and offer to help them stop the harassment. At that point, investigators said the eBay group was publishing personal information about the couple.

EBay’s security team registered for a software conference in Boston and then allegedly visited the defendant’s house under the guise of investigating them for threats made against eBay executives. Once the company learned about the investigation, the FBI said the participants conspired to lie to investigators about it.

U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said eBay cooperated in the investigation with federal officials.

Read more here.