Ex-Hudson jail official loses appeal to sue prank call companies from his wiretapping case


Former Hudson County Correctional Facility Deputy Director Kirk Eady lost an appeal of a decision that tossed his case against the prank call companies from his wiretapping case, where a grand jury found him guilty in March 2015.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View

He filed suit in 2017 against Tap Fury and Prank Dial, who sold technology that allowed purchasers to make prank calls.

“Eady sought punitive damages for violations of New Jersey consumer fraud and contract laws relating to his use of the technology and subsequent federal criminal prosecution for illegal wiretapping,” U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit Kent A. Jordan, Joseph Anthony Greenaway, Jr., and Richard Nygaard wrote in yesterday’s decision.

U.S. District Court Judge Esther Salas granted a motion for summary judgement on March 31st, 2022 and dismissed the complaint the following day.

Eady filed a motion for an extension of time to file an appeal on May 22nd “asserting that his failure to timely appeal was due to excusable neglect,” which Salas denied on August 1st, 2022.

“The District Court found that Eady did not demonstrate excusable neglect to
justify extending the time to appeal because, given Eady’s repeated failure to meet
deadlines and general lack of diligence in the five-year matter, the defendants were
;entitled to finality’ and in danger of prejudice, he did not bring the motion in good faith,
and his reason for the delay—due to the lack of diligence and competence of his
counsel—was inexcusable,” the Third Circuit Court noted.

“We find no abuse of discretion in that conclusion … The District Court thus properly exercised its discretion in denying the Rule 4(a)(5) motion, and we will not disturb its decision. Accordingly, we will affirm the judgment of the District Court.”

A federal grand jury in Newark found Eady guilty of recording conversations with Hudson County corrections officers via the Prank Dial website’s defunct Evil Operator function.

He received a 21-month jail sentence in September 2015 after a motion for acquittal was denied in April.

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