Taylor Swift’s lawyers are threatening legal action against a college student who has spent years tracking her private plane and documenting the flights on the internet.
On Tuesday, ET learned that the singer-songwriter’s legal team is considering suing Jack Sweeney, a junior at the University of Central Florida, who has spent the last several years sharing her flight log, as well as those of other celebrities and notable names.
According to Swift’s lawyers, broadcasting the information — which is aggregated via public flight data from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and online enthusiasts who track the flights — poses a major safety risk to Swift, 34.
“We are aware of your public disputes with other high-profile individuals and your tactics in those interactions, including offering to stop your harmful behavior only in exchange for items of value. While this may be a game to you, or an avenue that you hope will earn you wealth or fame, it is a life-or-death matter for our Client,” a legal letter from Swift’s attorneys to Sweeney, 21, reads. The letter was shared by the college student with The Washington Post, who broke the story.
Sweeney, who maintains via his personal social media accounts that he is within his rights to share the information online, does not share who is on the vessels he is tracking or where they go after landing. Since receiving complaints, he also has held off on posting the flights for 24 hours. In the tweet summaries of each flight, he shares the number of gallons of fuel used, the cost of the fuel and the alleged emission rates for each flight.
Despite his decision to hold off on posting the flight path for a day, Swift’s lawyers still argue that the sharing of the information at all has serious safety implications as a major public figure who has encountered serious stalking incidents in the past.
“Ms. Swift has dealt with stalkers and other individuals who wish her harm,” the letter continues. Her lawyers argue that the tracking has done “direct and irreparable harm, as well as emotional and physical distress” and that she lives in a “constant state of fear for her personal safety.”
Last month, a man was arrested three times within a week outside of Swift’s Manhattan home. Previously, she has also dealt with stalkers at her properties in Rhode Island and elsewhere. In 2019, Swift opened up in an interview on CBS Sunday Morning saying she makes it a point to keep her whereabouts as unknown as possible due to safety concerns.
“I try not to ever really say where I am, since all my addresses are on the internet,” she said at the time. “Dudes that think we have an imaginary marriage.”
In a statement to ET, Swift’s publicist, Tree Paine, said that they are concerned by the situation, but that it is under investigation with the proper authorities.
“We cannot comment on any ongoing police investigation but can confirm the timing of stalkers suggests a connection. His posts tell you exactly when and where she would be,” Paine said.
Swift certainly isn’t the only famous person Sweeney has issues with. X CEO Elon Musk, 52, banned the student from the social media platform in 2022. At the time, representatives justified the ban by saying the student was sharing Musk’s “assassination coordinates” with the world.
On Tuesday, Musk commented on the potential legal battle between Swift and Sweeney, writing in a tweet that the “Karma” singer should be concerned by the Florida college student’s actions.
“Sweeney is an awful human being. Taylor Swift is right to be concerned,” wrote Musk.
Swift’s team previously sent Sweeney a cease-and-desist letter in December telling him the singer would “have no choice but to pursue any and all legal remedies” if he did not stop sharing her flight information, which the lawyers referred to as “stalking and harassing behavior.”
In response, the college student alleges the “Bad Blood” crooner and her team are only upset as she continues to face criticism for her use of a private jet and the environmental impact of each trip.
In 2022, Swift was named by one analysis as “the biggest celebrity CO2e [carbon dioxide] polluter” of the year. Paine, however, argued at the time that the analysis was flawed for a myriad of reasons and that Swift purchased a sizable amount of “carbon credits.” The credits are used as a way to offset the carbon emissions of a person or business by contributing to projects that reduce and remove emissions from the atmosphere.
“This information is already out there,” Sweeney told The Post. “Her team thinks they can control the world.”
SOURCE: Entertaiment Tonight