When you’re told that some pranks lead to consequences, you’d better believe whoever tells you that, especially if one of those people is either Nicholas Kaiser or Joshua Barber. The dup behind the Mark Dominik-Buddy Nix phone prank from earlier this year have been charged with intentionally intercepting a wire communication and making a telephone call without disclosing their identity with the intent to annoy or harass the person at the called number.
Buffalo born U.S. Attorney for Western District of New York Williams Hochul presented the charges against the two 20-year old men on Wednesday.
Both Kaiser and Barber where the minds behind a prank that really did nothing more than give the world a fly on the wall look into how general managers conduct themselves in phone conversations. It was a bizarre prank that really shouldn’t even be deemed a prank as no one was really fooled. Essentially, the two men set up a phone conversation with then-Buffalo Bills general manager Buddy Nix and Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik.
A prank usually means something hilarious or embarrassing happens (see: Jackass). But Nix and Dominik pretty much just had a regular conversation and the biggest thing to come out of it was the nugget that Nix had made up his mind to release quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and this wasn’t yet known to the world.
But now the biggest thing to come out of this whole incident could end up being five years in prison and a half-a-million dollar fine for each of the pranksters involved. It seems harmless that the two just set up a phone conversation and then listened in as an unknown third party (you can imagine the snickering the the background of the conversation already), but even if they meant not harm they violated federal wiretapping laws that carry serious consequence.
To add to things, the federal complaint states that the two young men recorded the wiretap without authorized permission and then sold it to Deadspin for a profit.
This should serve as an example of no matter how harmless something seems, being an idiot carries a punishment and that punishment may end up being 5 years in prison and a fine of more money than you’ll see in the near future.