As the Top Gun star prepares for a legal battle with his third wife Katie Holmes, who filed for divorce on June 28, Celebuzz has obtained court documents that detail sensational claims about how the actor handled his shock split from Kidman in Feb. 2001, after she miscarried their baby.
Cruise, 50, conspired with former private eye-to-the-stars Anthony Pellicano to spy on Kidman, 45, according to a $5 million lawsuit filed by a tabloid magazine editor who once tried to “out” Cruise as gay.
Michael Davis Sapir first tangled with Cruise in June 2001 when the actor sued him for defamation over the attempted “outing” in his Bold magazine. He had offered a $500,000 award for videotape evidence that Cruise was homosexual.
Now — 11 years after that case was settled — Sapir is pursuing a civil lawsuit in which he alleged Cruise maintained a “long-standing business relationship” with Pellicano, who is now serving 15 years in prison for tapping the phones of Hollywood’s rich and famous.
“In or about the mid 1990s,” Sapir claimed in paperwork filed with the L.A. County Superior Court, “Cruise visited Pellicano’s office for the purpose of listening to wiretaps.”
He alleged: “During the time Cruise was about to divorce Nicole Kidman, Pellicano recorded conversations of Kidman and Cruise. Pellicano discussed with at least one of his employees the substance of those recorded conversations.”
Cruise, according to Sapir, had a “pattern and practice of hiring Pellicano, either directly or indirectly, for the express purpose of conducting wiretaps.”
He claimed Pellicano taped conversations between him and his attorney to gain an advantage for Cruise in the slander litigation.
Though Cruise hasn’t yet responded to the sleuth allegations in court, his lawyer Bert Fields said, at the time the case was originally filed in Dec. 2009, “The allegations are absolute garbage.”
Fields and Cruise’s divorce lawyer in the Holmes’ case, Dennis Wasser, have previously been implicated in the Pellicano scandal. Neither was ever charged as a result of the FBI probe, despite their connections to the convicted criminal.
The court claims centered around Cruise have surfaced amid reports that Holmes had become increasingly worried about her movements and was being followed by members of the Church of Scientology, in the wake of the split.
Cruise is the Church’s most public member. Scientology officials have denied they have the ex-Dawson’s Creek star is under surveillance.
What effect could the Kidman spying claims have on the Holmes’ divorce, if at all?
The allegations of snooping have yet to be tested in a court of law. Indeed, Sapir has presented little evidence to support his claims at this point of his litigation.
Even if substantiated, his allegations are unlikely to be admissible in Cruise’s current divorce, according to Hollywood-based attorney Catherine Lombardo.
But she predicted Holmes’ legal team of New Jersey-based attorney Jonathan Wolfe and New York lawyer Allan Mayefsky would, at the least, attempt to use the accusations as a way to show Cruise cannot be trusted.
“Katie’s lawyers would be smart to educate the judge about this,” Lombardo told Celebuzz.
“It is highly unlikely that any evidence that Cruise used Pellicano in the past would be admissible during his current divorce proceedings with Holmes. Any tape recordings that Cruise might have obtained from the services of Pellicano would have been illegally obtained, as is evidenced by the fact that Pellicano is currently serving a prison term. The general rule of law states that if recordings are made without the knowledge and consent of the other party, they are inadmissible in court at the very least and subject the recording party to criminal prosecution.
“Therefore, no Judge, either in New York or Los Angeles, will admit those recordings into evidence. Further, the actions at issue occurred 13 years ago, and it would be objected to as ‘remote in time,’ thereby probably making it inadmissible on those grounds as well.”
Cruise stunned Kidman when he filed for divorce, less than two months after they renewed their vows on their 10-year anniversary, Christmas Eve 2000.
Reeling at the shock, Kidman broke down in tears on Oprah in May 2001, calling the divorce a “nightmare.”
In a written response to Cruise’s divorce petition, Kidman said she was stunned when her Eyes Wide Shut co-star told her that he no longer wanted to be married. She begged him to stay and seek marriage counseling, but Cruise refused and left for good, Kidman told the court.
Pellicano was found guilty in 2008 on 76 counts — including wire fraud, identity theft and racketeering — and now he sits in a federal correctional facility in Big Spring, Texas.
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