Wednesday, 13 December, 2017

Howard Stern, IRS Sued for Broadcasting Conversation

An IRS agent called into the radio show and was put on hold. Then Debra L Rothenberg FilmMagic Howard Stern
Edmund Wade | 16 February, 2017, 00:39

Before the two conversation, Forsythe had called into "The Howard Stern Show" on another telephone line.

A caller from the summer of 2015 to Stern's show was "Jimmy From Long Island", who referred to an agent for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

"While on the phone with Agent Forsythe, Mrs. Barrigas suddenly began to receive a barrage of text messages and phone calls from unknown callers/individuals", telling that her phone number had been aired on Stern's show, the lawsuit states, per the Hollywood Reporter. Once a Stern employee caught wind of the conversation, it was aired live on Sirius XM.

She says "Stern Show" producers overheard her convo with Forsythe and chose to put it on the air to 1.2 million listeners - essentially eavesdropping on her very private and sensitive phone call.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Boston. While on hold, Forsythe took Barrigas' call and spoke to her for almost an hour about her issue.

Now, she's suing the United States of America, shock-jack Howard Stern and the Howard Stern Production Company on grounds of unlawful invasion of privacy and negligence, among other things.

The show, which has 30 million subscribers, shared Barrigas' phone number on the air.

"As soon as I heard of this information I just started to quiver, and had what I would call an out-of-body experience", she added.

She said the IRS informed her this indeed happened, but not until it was reported by local media, despite her many calls to the agency.

During this conversation, someone at Stern's show overheard that call and chose to air the discussion live on SiriusXM.

In addition to Barrigas' search for employment was reportedly impacted by the broadcast, she also "has difficulty sleeping and eating since the incident, and has sought treatment as a result".

Representatives for the IRS and Stern have not returned requests seeking comment.

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