New York Post 8-25-05
By KENNETH LOVETT in Park Ridge, N.J., and FREDRIC U. DICKER in Albany
August 25, 2005 -- There are more tapes!
That's the conclusion of a top forensic audio detective after analyzing the 45-minute tape of secret conversations involving Gov. Pataki and others, excerpts of which were published in The Post this week.
Audio expert Paul Ginsberg said the tape is made up of 88 different edits — indicating numerous other tapes were used to prepare the recording received anonymously in the mail by The Post.
"What you have here is a 'best of,' a compilation made from a number of different recordings," he said. "It was a project for somebody."
Ginsberg, president of Professional Audio Laboratories of Park Ridge, N.J., said the 88 "identifiable discontinuities" — where the tape stopped and started again — indicate the edits from the other still-undisclosed recordings.
On Monday and Tuesday, The Post published exclusive excerpts from the tapes in which Libby Pataki complains about her busy schedule as first lady and then-Sen. Alfonse D'Amato, former aide Tom Doherty and others discuss patronage problems.
Pataki has called the taping illegal and said that publication of the excerpts by The Post was against the law, too. The Post maintains the publication was legal.
Ginsberg's high-tech analysis of the tape, which was provided to him by The Post, also revealed:
* It is "highly unlikely" that Doherty — who is the only person heard in all the conversations — made the recordings himself.
* All the recorded calls came from the same phone line.
* The taping was almost certainly not the result of a federal investigation using sophisticated wiretaps, as some have suggested.
* The interception was probably done with a scanner or a bug placed on Doherty's phone.
Ginsberg has deciphered tapes for 31 years for government agencies, including the CIA and FBI, and for Fortune 500 firms.
Ginsberg, whose work is detailed on his Web site, proaudiolabs.com, did an extensive physical inspection of The Post's tape and determined it wasn't spliced and there was no evidence of erasing.
He noted there was a lot of hissing and background noise — which he said would not have been present if Doherty were taping himself.
Also, if the feds were doing the recording they would have tapped directly into the phone and obtained a "crystal clear" sound, he said.
Based on his analysis and digital enhancing of the recording, Ginsberg said that someone most likely used a scanner to pick up the signal from Doherty's cell or cordless phone.
The recording is believed to come from 1996-97, when analog phone technology made it fairly easy for a scanner to pick up phone sound.
Someone could be in a car around a corner or even a block away from the phone and still be able intercept the sound with a handheld scanner and record it.
Another possibility is that someone had access to Doherty's office or home and bugged the phone by putting a transmitter on its line.