NATICK (CBS) — A Natick couple has filed a lawsuit against eBay for cyberstalking.
Ina and David Steiner say eBay employees tortured them for two years because they posted online reviews about the site. Staffers allegedly sent the couple bizarre items, including a pig Halloween mask, insects and a book on losing a spouse.
“It was just terrifying. We were attacked online, we were doxxed, we were sent intimidating packages, threats,” Ina Steiner said Wednesday. “We were really very afraid. . . it is not right.”
When charges were announced in 2020, former U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling described the “disturbing deliveries” sent to the couple.
“These deliveries included fly larvae and live spiders, a box of live cockroaches, a sympathy wreath on the occasion of the death of a loved one, a book of advice on how to survive the death of a spouse, pornography mailed to their next door neighbors but in the couple’s names, Halloween masks featuring the face of the bloody pig, and the pig fetus which was ordered, but after an inquiry by the supplier, thankfully, wasn’t ever sent,” Lelling said.
Seven employees are named in the case. The lawsuit is seeking to hold eBay accountable.
Five of the workers have pleaded guilty to federal charges, but have not been sentenced yet.
A representative from eBay told WBZ-TV in a statement that the events “should never have happened” and said the company has told the Steiners that they are “very sorry for what they endured”.
“The misconduct of these former employees was wrong, and we will do what is fair and appropriate to try to address what the Steiners went through. The events from 2019 should never have happened, and as eBay expressed to the Steiners, we are very sorry for what they endured,” said eBay in their statement.
“As noted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office when this matter first came to light, eBay cooperated fully with the government’s investigation, noting that ‘eBay was extremely cooperative with the investigation in helping state and federal authorities figure out what had happened and collect evidence of the crime.’”