Illinois Eavesdropping Law and
Video at Protests



Illinois Eavesdropping Law and Video at Protests
by Sue Basko

UPDATE MARCH 2, 2012: Today, an Illinois Circuit Court Judge ruled that the Illinois Eavesdropping law is unconstitutional.  Beware though, because it is still the law and you can probably still be arrested under it.  The State (prosecution) is able to appeal the ruling directly to the Illinois Supreme Court.  I have not heard yet if that is their intention.

The case was from 2009, when an older artist named Christopher Drew was selling art on the street allegedly without a vendor's license.  He was arrested, and while being arrested, he audio recorded the arrest using a hidden recorder in his jacket pocket.  When Mr. Drew tried to use the audio recording as evidence of mistreatment by the police, he was charged with eavesdropping.

An Illinois legislator has submitted a bill that would change the law, but only slightly.  If that new law is enacted, it would change the law so that it is no longer illegal to audio record police in their official duties in public if the speaking can be heard at a normal range -- meaning one would not be able to use a shotgun mic or other device to pick up with audio.

However, keep in mind, this is not yet the law.   The law remains as stated below, but one Judge in one case has ruled the law to be unconstitutional.  A Circuit Court judge's ruling does not have precedent over what any other Judge might do, although it would have a persuasive effect in argument.  This post will be updated as progress is made.  

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The Illinois Eavesdropping law is a very broadly-written law just waiting to be challenged in court.  Here, I will explain how to pertains to videotaping or streaming at protests.  The whole law is below, with the pertinent parts highlighted.

The Illinois Eavesdropping law makes it a crime to record the conversation of two or more people without their prior permission, or to divulge or use any such recording.  There are some exceptions to the law.

A recent criminal case emanating out of Massachusetts  involved a lawyer named Simon Glik who videotaped police who were conducting a rough arrest of a young man.  Glik was arrested and charged under the Massachusetts Eavesdropping law for recording a conversation without permission.  The criminal charges were later thrown out because the Massachusetts Eavesdropping law requires eavesdropping to be surreptitious, meaning hidden or unseen.  Glik held his cell phone camera out and it was definitely seen, which is what prompted the police to arrest him.

The Illinois law DOES NOT follow this pattern.  The Illinois law is very broadly-written.  It calls any recording device an eavesdropping device and makes no requirement that it be surreptitious. Further, the Illinois law specifically states that it applies whether or not the speakers were in a situation where they had an expectation of privacy.  

What does this mean? It means that in Illinois, if you record conversation of two or more people without their permission, even on a crowded street, even with your recorder or camera out in full view, you are  eavesdropping. 

What does this mean?  It means the Illinois Eavesdropping law will remain in force with regard to street recording, until the law is successfully challenged.  The law is overly broad and vague and very poorly written, just begging for a court challenge.  The law defines “eavesdropping device” as anything that can record, and then requires everyone, even an individual , to report when they are aware that someone has an eavesdropping device not known to be legal.  It is a Business Offense not to do so.  According to this law, everyone in Illinois is supposed to turn in all their family and friends for having cell phone cameras or camcorders or audio recorders if they’ve ever recorded a conversation without asking everyone first.  The law is ridiculous in so many ways and needs to be challenged. 

BOTTOM LINE: What’s the Illinois Eavesdropping law as it applies to a person at a protest with a video camera?  If you are not recording for broadcast or for later broadcast, it means:  You cannot record audio on any conversation between any 2 people without permission, and you cannot divulge or use the contents of any such audio recording.  Remember: This applies only to the audio portion, so if you can turn off the audio and capture only  video, you are within the law.  A camera with a mic that plugs in and out is good.   RECORD VIDEO AND NOT AUDIO WHEN IN DOUBT.

The other thing to remember is: What is a conversation? Two or more people  talking to each other.  That includes you talking with someone, people around you talking, a police officer talking to you or to someone else.  What is not conversation?  Anything that is not two people talking to each other.  For example, someone giving a speech or making an announcement is not a conversation.  A group chanting is not a conversation.  A single person shouting where no one replies is not a conversation.  Real life sound effects, such as sirens, honking, gunshots, etc., are not conversation.  The sound of a baton cracking someone’s skull is not a conversation.  Anything that is not two or more people orally communicating with each other is not a conversation.

Broadcast Exception: 
(720 ILCS 5/143)
Sec. 143. Exemptions. The following activities shall be exempt from the provisions of this Article: (c) Any broadcast by radio, television or otherwise whether it be a broadcast or recorded for the purpose of later broadcasts of any function where the public is in attendance and the conversations are overheard incidental to the main purpose for which such broadcasts are then being made;

What is broadcast?  I think live streaming is broadcast, especially if the streamer has a press credential.  I think it is also broadcasting if the streamer has a channel and an audience, especially if your channel has the capacity for an unlimited audience.  If you are on a unverified stream with a low cap (50) on audience, that may not be broadcasting, but it might also be argued that it is broadcasting.   

What would the exemption include?  Any function where the public is in attendance – (that would include a protest or public meeting) and the exemption extends to conversations that are “overheard incidental to the main purpose for which such broadcasts are being made.  Is simply being out on the street a "function"?  I doubt it.  Is a street arrest a "function where the public is in attendance"?  Possibly, if there are members of the public there.   These are not tested interpretations of the law, they are merely potential arguments one might used if facing arrest or prosecution.  Please consult with a lawyer for your own specific needs.

What would this probably include in the context of a protest?  It seems like if you are live streaming a protest and if two people happen by your camera and talk, until you can either whoosh them away or let them know you are streaming, and either ask their permission to record them, or ask them to be quiet or move – or you yourself move, or turn off your microphone, -- that is probably the sort of recording that is exempt from this law.

Streaming Arrests:  How about if you are streaming a protest to a potentially unlimited audience (broadcasting) and if part of your purpose is to stream the  whole protest, including any arrests?  You can record and/or stream the video, but can you also record stream the audio?  THAT is the golden question.  If you do and get arrested, you will be facing serious charges, but you will also be in a golden position to challenge the Illinois Eavesdropping law.  There is that risk, and if you are not up for the risk, you should not stream audio of police action, including arrests.  If you are up for the risk, be prepared with significant bail money and legal assistance.  Someone has to challenge this law and it could be you.

Below is the Illinois law with the most pertinent parts highlighted:

Illinois Criminal Code Eavesdropping Law
(720 ILCS 5/141) (from Ch. 38, par. 141)

Sec. 141. Definition.
(a) Eavesdropping device.
An eavesdropping device is any device capable of being used to hear or record oral conversation or intercept, retain, or transcribe electronic communications whether such conversation or electronic communication is conducted in person, by telephone, or by any other means; Provided, however, that this definition shall not include devices used for the restoration of the deaf or hardofhearing to normal or partial hearing.

(b) Eavesdropper.
An eavesdropper is any person, including law enforcement officers, who is a principal, as defined in this Article, or who operates or participates in the operation of any eavesdropping device contrary to the provisions of this Article.

(c) Principal.
A principal is any person who:
(1) Knowingly employs another who illegally uses an eavesdropping device in the course of such employment; or
(2) Knowingly derives any benefit or information from the illegal use of an eavesdropping device by another; or
(3) Directs another to use an eavesdropping device illegally on his behalf.

(d) Conversation.
For the purposes of this Article, the term conversation means any oral communication between 2 or more persons regardless of whether one or more of the parties intended their communication to be of a private nature under circumstances justifying that expectation.

(e) Electronic communication.
For purposes of this Article, the term electronic communication means any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any nature transmitted in whole or part by a wire, radio, pager, computer, electromagnetic, photo electronic or photo optical system, where the sending and receiving parties intend the electronic communication to be private and the interception, recording, or transcription of the electronic communication is accomplished by a device in a surreptitious manner contrary to the provisions of this Article. Electronic communication does not include any communication from a tracking device.

(f) Bait car.
For purposes of this Article, the term bait car means any motor vehicle that is not occupied by a law enforcement officer and is used by a law enforcement agency to deter, detect, identify, and assist in the apprehension of an auto theft suspect in the act of stealing a motor vehicle.
(Source: P.A. 95258, eff. 1108.)

(720 ILCS 5/142) (from Ch. 38, par. 142)
Sec. 142. Elements of the offense; affirmative defense. 
(a) A person commits eavesdropping when he:

(1) Knowingly and intentionally uses an eavesdropping device for the purpose of hearing or recording all or any part of any conversation or intercepts, retains, or transcribes electronic communication unless he does so (A) with the consent of all of the parties to such conversation or electronic communication or (B) in accordance with Article 108A or Article 108B of the "Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963", approved August 14, 1963, as amended; or

(2) Manufactures, assembles, distributes, or possesses any electronic, mechanical, eavesdropping, or other device knowing that or having reason to know that the design of the device renders it primarily useful for the purpose of the surreptitious hearing or recording of oral conversations or the interception, retention, or transcription of electronic communications and the intended or actual use of the device is contrary to the provisions of this Article; or

(3) Uses or divulges, except as authorized by this Article or by Article 108A or 108B of the "Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963", approved August 14, 1963, as amended, any information which he knows or reasonably should know was obtained through the use of an eavesdropping device.

(b) It is an affirmative defense to a charge brought under this Article relating to the interception of a privileged communication that the person charged:
1. was a law enforcement officer acting pursuant to an order of interception, entered pursuant to Section 108A1 or 108B5 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963; and
2. at the time the communication was intercepted, the officer was unaware that the communication was privileged; and
3. stopped the interception within a reasonable time after discovering that the communication was privileged; and
4. did not disclose the contents of the communication.

(c) It is not unlawful for a manufacturer or a supplier of eavesdropping devices, or a provider of wire or electronic communication services, their agents, employees, contractors, or venders to manufacture, assemble, sell, or possess an eavesdropping device within the normal course of their business for purposes not contrary to this Article or for law enforcement officers and employees of the Illinois Department of Corrections to manufacture, assemble, purchase, or possess an eavesdropping device in preparation for or within the course of their official duties.

(d) The interception, recording, or transcription of an electronic communication by an employee of a penal institution is not prohibited under this Act, provided that the interception, recording, or transcription is:
(1) otherwise legally permissible under Illinois law;
(2) conducted with the approval of the penal institution for the purpose of investigating or enforcing a State criminal law or a penal institution rule or regulation with respect to inmates in the institution; and
(3) within the scope of the employee's official duties.
For the purposes of this subsection (d), "penal institution" has the meaning ascribed to it in clause (c)(1) of Section 31A1.1.
(Source: P.A. 94183, eff. 1106.)  

(720 ILCS 5/143)
Sec. 143. Exemptions. The following activities shall be exempt from the provisions of this Article:

(a) Listening to radio, wireless and television communications of any sort where the same are publicly made;

(b) Hearing conversation when heard by employees of any common carrier by wire incidental to the normal course of their employment in the operation, maintenance or repair of the equipment of such common carrier by wire so long as no information obtained thereby is used or divulged by the hearer;

(c) Any broadcast by radio, television or otherwise whether it be a broadcast or recorded for the purpose of later broadcasts of any function where the public is in attendance and the conversations are overheard incidental to the main purpose for which such broadcasts are then being made;

(d) Recording or listening with the aid of any device to any emergency communication made in the normal course of operations by any federal, state or local law enforcement agency or institutions dealing in emergency services, including, but not limited to, hospitals, clinics, ambulance services, fire fighting agencies, any public utility, emergency repair facility, civilian defense establishment or military installation;

(e) Recording the proceedings of any meeting required to be open by the Open Meetings Act, as amended;

(f) Recording or listening with the aid of any device to incoming telephone calls of phone lines publicly listed or advertised as consumer "hotlines" by manufacturers or retailers of food and drug products. Such recordings must be destroyed, erased or turned over to local law enforcement authorities within 24 hours from the time of such recording and shall not be otherwise disseminated. Failure on the part of the individual or business operating any such recording or listening device to comply with the requirements of this subsection shall eliminate any civil or criminal immunity conferred upon that individual or business by the operation of this Section;

(g) With prior notification to the State's Attorney of the county in which it is to occur, recording or listening with the aid of any device to any conversation where a law enforcement officer, or any person acting at the direction of law enforcement, is a party to the conversation and has consented to it being intercepted or recorded under circumstances where the use of the device is necessary for the protection of the law enforcement officer or any person acting at the direction of law enforcement, in the course of an investigation of a forcible felony, a felony violation of the Illinois Controlled Substances Act, a felony violation of the Cannabis Control Act, a felony violation of the Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act, or any "streetgang related" or "gangrelated" felony as those terms are defined in the Illinois Streetgang Terrorism Omnibus Prevention Act. Any recording or evidence derived as the result of this exemption shall be inadmissible in any proceeding, criminal, civil or administrative, except (i) where a party to the conversation suffers great bodily injury or is killed during such conversation, or (ii) when used as direct impeachment of a witness concerning matters contained in the interception or recording. The Director of the Department of State Police shall issue regulations as are necessary concerning the use of devices, retention of tape recordings, and reports regarding their use;
(g5) With approval of the State's Attorney of the county in which it is to occur, recording or listening with the aid of any device to any conversation where a law enforcement officer, or any person acting at the direction of law enforcement, is a party to the conversation and has consented to it being intercepted or recorded in the course of an investigation of any offense defined in Article 29D of this Code. In all such cases, an application for an order approving the previous or continuing use of an eavesdropping device must be made within 48 hours of the commencement of such use. In the absence of such an order, or upon its denial, any continuing use shall immediately terminate. The Director of State Police shall issue rules as are necessary concerning the use of devices, retention of tape recordings, and reports regarding their use.
Any recording or evidence obtained or derived in the course of an investigation of any offense defined in Article 29D of this Code shall, upon motion of the State's Attorney or Attorney General prosecuting any violation of Article 29D, be reviewed in camera with notice to all parties present by the court presiding over the criminal case, and, if ruled by the court to be relevant and otherwise admissible, it shall be admissible at the trial of the criminal case.
This subsection (g5) is inoperative on and after January 1, 2005. No conversations recorded or monitored pursuant to this subsection (g5) shall be inadmissible in a court of law by virtue of the repeal of this subsection (g5) on January 1, 2005;
(g6) With approval of the State's Attorney of the county in which it is to occur, recording or listening with the aid of any device to any conversation where a law enforcement officer, or any person acting at the direction of law enforcement, is a party to the conversation and has consented to it being intercepted or recorded in the course of an investigation of child pornography. In all such cases, an application for an order approving the previous or continuing use of an eavesdropping device must be made within 48 hours of the commencement of such use. In the absence of such an order, or upon its denial, any continuing use shall immediately terminate. The Director of State Police shall issue rules as are necessary concerning the use of devices, retention of recordings, and reports regarding their use. Any recording or evidence obtained or derived in the course of an investigation of child pornography shall, upon motion of the State's Attorney or Attorney General prosecuting any case involving child pornography, be reviewed in camera with notice to all parties present by the court presiding over the criminal case, and, if ruled by the court to be relevant and otherwise admissible, it shall be admissible at the trial of the criminal case. Absent such a ruling, any such recording or evidence shall not be admissible at the trial of the criminal case;

(h) Recordings made simultaneously with a video recording of an oral conversation between a peace officer, who has identified his or her office, and a person stopped for an investigation of an offense under the Illinois Vehicle Code;

(i) Recording of a conversation made by or at the request of a person, not a law enforcement officer or agent of a law enforcement officer, who is a party to the conversation, under reasonable suspicion that another party to the conversation is committing, is about to commit, or has committed a criminal offense against the person or a member of his or her immediate household, and there is reason to believe that evidence of the criminal offense may be obtained by the recording;

(j) The use of a telephone monitoring device by either (1) a corporation or other business entity engaged in marketing or opinion research or (2) a corporation or other business entity engaged in telephone solicitation, as defined in this subsection, to record or listen to oral telephone solicitation conversations or marketing or opinion research conversations by an employee of the corporation or other business entity when:
(i) the monitoring is used for the purpose of service quality control of marketing or opinion research or telephone solicitation, the education or training of employees or contractors engaged in marketing or opinion research or telephone solicitation, or internal research related to marketing or opinion research or telephone solicitation; and
(ii) the monitoring is used with the consent of at least one person who is an active party to the marketing or opinion research conversation or telephone solicitation conversation being monitored.
No communication or conversation or any part, portion, or aspect of the communication or conversation made, acquired, or obtained, directly or indirectly, under this exemption (j), may be, directly or indirectly, furnished to any law enforcement officer, agency, or official for any purpose or used in any inquiry or investigation, or used, directly or indirectly, in any administrative, judicial, or other proceeding, or divulged to any third party.
When recording or listening authorized by this subsection (j) on telephone lines used for marketing or opinion research or telephone solicitation purposes results in recording or listening to a conversation that does not relate to marketing or opinion research or telephone solicitation; the person recording or listening shall, immediately upon determining that the conversation does not relate to marketing or opinion research or telephone solicitation, terminate the recording or listening and destroy any such recording as soon as is practicable.
Business entities that use a telephone monitoring or telephone recording system pursuant to this exemption (j) shall provide current and prospective employees with notice that the monitoring or recordings may occur during the course of their employment. The notice shall include prominent signage notification within the workplace.
Business entities that use a telephone monitoring or telephone recording system pursuant to this exemption (j) shall provide their employees or agents with access to personalonly telephone lines which may be pay telephones, that are not subject to telephone monitoring or telephone recording.
For the purposes of this subsection (j), "telephone solicitation" means a communication through the use of a telephone by live operators:
(i) soliciting the sale of goods or services;
(ii) receiving orders for the sale of goods or services;
(iii) assisting in the use of goods or services; or
(iv) engaging in the solicitation, administration, or collection of bank or retail credit accounts.
For the purposes of this subsection (j), "marketing or opinion research" means a marketing or opinion research interview conducted by a live telephone interviewer engaged by a corporation or other business entity whose principal business is the design, conduct, and analysis of polls and surveys measuring the opinions, attitudes, and responses of respondents toward products and services, or social or political issues, or both;

(k) Electronic recordings, including but not limited to, a motion picture, videotape, digital, or other visual or audio recording, made of a custodial interrogation of an individual at a police station or other place of detention by a law enforcement officer under Section 5401.5 of the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 or Section 1032.1 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963;

(l) Recording the interview or statement of any person when the person knows that the interview is being conducted by a law enforcement officer or prosecutor and the interview takes place at a police station that is currently participating in the Custodial Interview Pilot Program established under the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Act;

(m) An electronic recording, including but not limited to, a motion picture, videotape, digital, or other visual or audio recording, made of the interior of a school bus while the school bus is being used in the transportation of students to and from school and schoolsponsored activities, when the school board has adopted a policy authorizing such recording, notice of such recording policy is included in student handbooks and other documents including the policies of the school, notice of the policy regarding recording is provided to parents of students, and notice of such recording is clearly posted on the door of and inside the school bus.
Recordings made pursuant to this subsection (m) shall be confidential records and may only be used by school officials (or their designees) and law enforcement personnel for investigations, school disciplinary actions and hearings, proceedings under the Juvenile Court Act of 1987, and criminal prosecutions, related to incidents occurring in or around the school bus; and

(n) Recording or listening to an audio transmission from a microphone placed by a person under the authority of a law enforcement agency inside a bait car surveillance vehicle while simultaneously capturing a photographic or video image.
(Source: P.A. 94556, eff. 91105; 95258, eff. 1108; 95352, eff. 82307; 95463, eff. 6108; 95876, eff. 82108.)

(720 ILCS 5/143A)
Sec. 143A. Recordings, records, and custody.
(a) Any private oral communication intercepted in accordance with subsection (g) of Section 143 shall, if practicable, be recorded by tape or other comparable method. The recording shall, if practicable, be done in such a way as will protect it from editing or other alteration. During an interception, the interception shall be carried out by a law enforcement officer, and the officer shall keep a signed, written record, including:

(1) The day and hours of interception or recording;

(2) The time and duration of each intercepted communication;

(3) The parties, if known, to each intercepted communication; and

(4) A summary of the contents of each intercepted communication.

(b) Both the written record of the interception or recording and any and all recordings of the interception or recording shall immediately be inventoried and shall be maintained where the chief law enforcement officer of the county in which the interception or recording occurred directs. The written records of the interception or recording conducted under subsection (g) of Section 143 shall not be destroyed except upon an order of a court of competent jurisdiction and in any event shall be kept for 10 years.
(Source: P.A. 88677, eff. 121594.)

720 ILCS 5/143B)
Sec. 143B. Notice of interception or recording.
(a) Within a reasonable time, but not later than 60 days after the termination of the investigation for which the interception or recording was conducted, or immediately upon the initiation of criminal proceedings, the person who was the subject of an interception or recording under subsection (g) of Section 143 shall be served with an inventory that shall include:

(1) Notice to any person who was the subject of the interception or recording;

(2) Notice of any interception or recording if the defendant was arrested or indicted or otherwise charged as a result of the interception of his or her private oral communication;

(3) The date of the interception or recording;

(4) The period of interception or recording; and

(5) Notice of whether during the period of interception or recording devices were or were not used to overhear and record various conversations and whether or not the conversations are recorded.

(b) A court of competent jurisdiction, upon filing of a motion, may in its discretion make available to those persons or their attorneys for inspection those portions of the intercepted communications as the court determines to be in the interest of justice.
(Source: P.A. 88677, eff. 121594.)

(720 ILCS 5/144) (from Ch. 38, par. 144)
Sec. 144. Sentence.
(a) Eavesdropping, for a first offense, is a Class 4 felony and, for a second or subsequent offense, is a Class 3 felony.

(b) The eavesdropping of an oral conversation or an electronic communication between any law enforcement officer, State's Attorney, Assistant State's Attorney, the Attorney General, Assistant Attorney General, or a judge, while in the performance of his or her official duties, if not authorized by this Article or proper court order, is a Class 1 felony.
(Source: P.A. 91357, eff. 72999; 91657, eff. 1100.)

720 ILCS 5/145) (from Ch. 38, par. 145)
Sec. 145. Evidence inadmissible.
Any evidence obtained in violation of this Article is not admissible in any civil or criminal trial, or any administrative or legislative inquiry or proceeding, nor in any grand jury proceedings; provided, however, that so much of the contents of an alleged unlawfully intercepted, overheard or recorded conversation as is clearly relevant, as determined as a matter of law by the court in chambers, to the proof of such allegation may be admitted into evidence in any criminal trial or grand jury proceeding brought against any person charged with violating any provision of this Article.
(Source: Laws 1965, p. 3198.)

720 ILCS 5/146) (from Ch. 38, par. 146)
Sec. 146. Civil remedies to injured parties. (1) Any or all parties to any conversation upon which eavesdropping is practiced contrary to this Article shall be entitled to the following remedies:

(a) To an injunction by the circuit court prohibiting further eavesdropping by the eavesdropper and by or on behalf of his principal, or either;

(b) To all actual damages against the eavesdropper or his principal or both;

(c) To any punitive damages which may be awarded by the court or by a jury;

(d) To all actual damages against any landlord, owner or building operator, or any common carrier by wire who aids, abets, or knowingly permits the eavesdropping concerned;

(e) To any punitive damages which may be awarded by the court or by a jury against any landlord, owner or building operator, or common carrier by wire who aids, abets, or knowingly permits the eavesdropping concerned.

(2) No cause of action shall lie in any court against any common carrier by wire or its officers, agents or employees for providing information, assistance or facilities in accordance with the terms of a court order entered under Article 108A of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963.
(Source: P.A. 85868.)

(720 ILCS 5/147) (from Ch. 38, par. 147)
Sec. 147. Common carrier to aid in detection.
Subject to regulation by the Illinois Commerce Commission, any common carrier by wire shall, upon request of any subscriber and upon responsible offer to pay the reasonable cost thereof, furnish whatever services may be within its command for the purpose of detecting any eavesdropping involving its wires which are used by said subscriber. All such requests by subscribers shall be kept confidential unless divulgence is authorized in writing by the requesting subscriber.
(Source: Laws 1961, p. 1983.)

(720 ILCS 5/148) (from Ch. 38, par. 148)
Sec. 148. Discovery of eavesdropping device by an individual, common carrier, private investigative agency or nongovernmental corporation). Any agent, officer or employee of a private investigative agency or nongovernmental corporation, or of a common carrier by wire, or any individual, who discovers any physical evidence of an eavesdropping device being used which such person does not know to be a legal eavesdropping device shall, within a reasonable time after such discovery disclose the existence of such eavesdropping device to the State's Attorney of the county where such device was found. The State's Attorney shall within a reasonable time notify the person or persons apparently being eavesdropped upon of the existence of that device if the device is illegal. A violation of this Section is a Business Offense for which a fine shall be imposed not to exceed $500.
(Source: P.A. 79984; 791454.)

(720 ILCS 5/149) (from Ch. 38, par. 149)
Sec. 149. Discovery of eavesdropping device by common carrier by wire  disclosure to subscriber.) Any agent, officer or employee of any common carrier by wire who discovers any physical evidence of an eavesdropping device which such person does not know to be a legal eavesdropping device shall, within a reasonable time after such discovery, disclose the existence of the eavesdropping device to the State's Attorney of the County where such device was found. The State's Attorney shall within a reasonable time notify the person or persons apparently being eavesdropped upon of the existence of that device if the device is illegal. A violation of this Section is a Business Offense for which a fine shall be imposed not to exceed $500.
(Source: P.A. 79985.)