Reporting Kevin Battle
First there was a Vicodin scandal. Then came the Bounty scandal. Mickey Loomis, suspended General Manager of The New Orleans Saints, is under the microscope once again. John Barr of ESPN’s ‘Outside The Lines’ joined The Norris & Davis Show to discuss the eavesdropping scandal which he reported yesterday.
According to Barr, Loomis had an electronic device in his Superdome suite secretly rewired so he could listen in on conversations of opposing coaching staffs. Listen to the entire interview here:
Some may find the practice may be unsportsmanlike. Others may feel it is a competitive advantage. But, is it illegal? ‘Yes, it was against the law,’ according to Barr. ‘Technically under the law it falls under the category of electronic eavesdropping. The applicable part of the law here is that you can’t use an electronic device to eavesdrop on a conversation if you are not a party to that conversation.’
According to Barr, the important for Loomis is that the law carries a 5-year statute of limitations. ‘If what we’re hearing from our sources is correct, and we them to be credible, Loomis ceased doing this after the 2004 season so that would mean he would be free from any potential criminal charges.’
While conducting interviews with over 50 witnesses regarding the NFL Bounty scandal, Sources told Barr and ESPN that the US Attorneys’ office in New Orleans and the FBI had been briefed and were looking into the possibility of eavesdropping.
The Saints deny the allegations. And, Although they are confident in the information provided by their sources, ESPN was not able to substantiate any claim that Loomis or the Saints used the device for a competitive advantage.