Detective Brian Matthews was recently featured in an article on Los Angeles Magazine entitled, “The Private Investigators Who Track Down L.A.’s Cheaters Tell All,” which takes a look at some of L.A.’s top private investigators most memorable romance-related cases.
Below are excerpts of Detective Matthew’s responses to the questions posed in the article.
How did you become a private investigator?
I’ve been a P.I. for 28 years, first in Florida and then in California. But I’ve also been a pilot, substance abuse counselor, card counter (I made over a million dollars doing that), and wealthy business owner. I also wrote a book (to be published in 2020) and am in talks to be a technical advisor for a detective show on ABC. I also have a blog.
What are the key tools for tracking down a cheater?
Surveillance and covert video cameras. I do a lot of undercover work and personal contact under false pretenses. To prove cheating, I need video proof of two people in physical contact. Internet messages are not enough. First thing people want to know is if I can get into emails and texts. My answer is no comment… If I testify, I need to have photos and proof to be ready for cross examination. I have to have multiple incidences of documentation. That means I have to watch for awhile, look for PDAs like kissing or footsies to prove they’re not just friends.
Do you ever do a background check on a romantic prospect for a client?
All the time and they should. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Most of the time they’ve called after they’ve been scammed. When someone calls ahead of time, it can be about any investment, more often than not, we find there are bankruptcies.
What’s the most memorable or “most L.A.” infidelity case you’ve ever worked on?
I busted the married CEO of a big company cheating with a married woman. I caught him on a Malibu beach. The CEO’s wife spent $30,000 trying to catch him and I did.
If someone suspects their lover/spouse is cheating, what percentage of the time are they right?
Most of the time, they are right. When they call me, it’s not the first time there’s been cheating. It’s just getting the evidence. Sometimes, it’s a big surprise, and then there’s a lot of crying and denial from both men and women. Often they already know. They’ve been through that phase.
Has it changed your view of love?
I’m armed with more knowledge about why people cheat. I can look back on it with a more educated perspective. Divorce is nasty. I try to give clients as much heads up to ward off what they’re about to go through. The news that a spouse is cheating is a big thing to swallow and the worst part is yet to come. They have to separate, then file and then fight for money and children. That’s when it gets really nasty–who’s going to get what. The more they were in love, the more they hate each other in the divorce. They want things just for the principal to spite each other. Community property states help solve it. Lawyers cause a lot of trouble. They walk away with most money.
Original article can be read here.