Six former eBay employees have been charged for an “aggressive cyber-stalking campaign” targeting a couple that published the newsletter for their negative eBay coverage — sending the couple online threats, abuses, mailing live insects and bloody pig face masks, and driving to their Massachusetts home to surveil them.
The Department of Justice alleges that James Baugh, David Harville, Stephanie Popp, Brian Gilbert, Stephanie Stockwell and Veronica Zea were involved in the harassment campaign.
The accused created an anonymous account to send insults and threats to the editor of the newsletter and her husband. Later on, the harassment escalated into in-person harassment.
They shipped pig masks, a box of cockroaches, another box of fly larvae and live spiders, pornography, a book on “surviving the loss of a spouse”, a sympathy wreath from a local florist and a “preserved fetal pig” — although the pig fetus was never delivered.
The team also allegedly spied on the couple to find evidence that they were collaborating with troll commentators. At one point, they planned to break into their garage and install a tracking device in their car.
eBay’s leadership supposedly didn’t know about the harassment campaign until being notified by law enforcement in August 2019.
The company posted a statement saying that they have terminated all the employees involved in the case and “eBay does not tolerate this kind of behavior”.
“eBay apologises to the affected individuals and is sorry that they were subjected to this. eBay holds its employees to high standards of conduct and ethics and will continue to take appropriate action to ensure these standards are followed.”
Baugh was eBays global security and resiliency director, Harville was director of global resiliency, Popp was senior manager of global intelligence and Gilbert was a former police captain who handled security and safety at eBay’s North American offices.