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Dunn, Others Charged Over HP Spying

By: David Utter

Ex-chairman Patricia Dunn and four other people face indictments in California due to their roles in a spying scandal that affected board members and journalists.

H-P CEO May Testify Before CongressSomewhere, erstwhile HP (HPQ) CEO Carly Fiorina might have her feet up on a comfortable footstool, with several news websites displayed on a notebook computer. Paging through the saga of HP and its pretexting problems probably makes for entertaining reading for Mark Hurd's predecessor.

California Attorney General Bill Lockyer has not placed notice of the indictments on his website yet. But the Wall Street Journal said charges have been filed against five people:

Attorney General Bill Lockyer filed criminal complaints in Santa Clara County Superior Court naming Ms. Dunn and Mr. Hunsaker, an H-P vice president that directed key parts of the controversial investigation and resigned last week.

Also charged were private investigator Ronald DeLia of Security Outsourcing Solutions Inc., Needham, Mass., and outside investigators Joseph DePante of Melbourne, Fla., and Bryan Wagner of Littleton, Colo. Mr. DePante's firm, Action Research Group, assisted H-P in obtaining the personal phone records of more than 20 people, including H-P directors, employees and journalists.

All of them have a slate of four felony charges each awaiting them, according to the report: use of false or fraudulent pretenses to obtain confidential information from a public utility, unauthorized access to computer data, identity theft, and conspiracy to commit each of those crimes.

Hurd has avoided being discussed so far in terms of prosecution. His role in speaking before a Congressional committee looking into the scandal has been viewed in a mostly positive way.

Investors seem unconcerned by the events. Shares of HP closed at 38.02, up 60 cents in trading today.

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