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First Spammer Convicted Under CAN-SPAM Law

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the everyone-else-is-sending-greeting-cards dept.

The Courts 226

eldavojohn writes "Spammer Jeffrey Brett Goodin has been convicted under the 2003 CAN-SPAM Act, the first person in the U.S. prosecuted successfully under the law. He is facing a sentence of up to 101 years in a federal prison after being found guilty of numerous illegal acts. According to prosecutors, Goodin was convicted on multiple counts in addition to the CAN-SPAM conviction, including wire fraud, unauthorized use of credit cards, misuse of the AOL trademark and attempted witness harassment. From the article: 'The law forbids e-mail marketers from sending false or misleading messages and requires them to provide recipients with a way to opt out of receiving future mailings. During trial, prosecutors presented evidence that Goodin used several compromised Internet accounts to send e-mails to America Online users. The e-mails appeared to be from the company's billing department and told customers to update their billing information or lose service.'"

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226 comments

Over the top (5, Insightful)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670310)

If this is relating to computer fraud how the fuck can they justify over 100 years of punishment?
Rapists and murderers get less.

I don't like spam but ffs that is so harsh.

Re:Over the top (4, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670354)

If this is relating to computer fraud how the fuck can they justify over 100 years of punishment? Rapists and murderers get less.

Rapists and murderers usually rape and murder less people. This douchebag probably targeted millions of people.

Re:Over the top (1)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670546)

So if a reasonably well known person, like a media personality annoys enough people, you can use the death penalty on him?

Re:Over the top (3, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670586)

So if a reasonably well known person, like a media personality annoys enough people, you can use the death penalty on him?

You are confusing several important things here:

1. This has nothing to do w/the death penalty.

2. He hasn't been sentenced yet. That happens on 6/11. Just because he's been convicted doesn't mean his sentence will be anything close to 101 years.

3. Fraud isn't just "annoying".

Re:Over the top (1)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670818)

1. It was just a hyperbole

2. My problem was with your reasoning, not the facts of the case.

3. That's true, but it's not murder either. I'd require both huge damages and huge numbers of people defrauded in order to sentence someone comparable to a murder conviction, if I were in the position to write the law. My problem was with the reasoning that defrauding lots of people for small amounts is comparable to murder, if the number of people involved is high enough. It's quite a complex issue I'd think, but my general rule of thumb is that inconveniencing lots of people to a small degree is much less worse than ruining/ending a single person's life.

Re:Over the top (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670874)

Despite your argument having little to do with the matter at hand, I find myself attracted to your suggestion. May I inquire if you publish a newsletter? Oh, and may I nominate Tom Cruise as a test case?

Re:Over the top (1)

AndyG314 (760442) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671102)

He hasen't been sentenced yet. The 101 years is simply a theoritical maximum arrived at by adding up the maximum senctence for each thing he was found guilty of.

If one count of fraud carried a maximum penelty of 1 year, then 100 counts of fraud would carry a maximum penelty of 100 years. That's how the number got so big. In reality he will probbly do much less.

Re:Over the top (4, Informative)

radarsat1 (786772) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670466)

from the summary:
including wire fraud, unauthorized use of credit cards, misuse of the AOL trademark and attempted witness harassment


That's a lot more than just sending annoying emails. Basically, the guy is a crook. Why do you have a problem with him going to jail? People do time for things other than violent crime, you know.

Re:Over the top (3, Interesting)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670834)

When dealing with life sentence/death penalty, the crime has to scale well with murder. Here's why:

If you are in the process of commiting a crime (in this case intrawebs fraud), and know you will face 100 years in prison for getting caught, what's to stop you from killing anyone who gets in your way? Any other sentences would be inconsiquential. Hell, you might as well try and take down the police who attempt to bring you in. If you manage to get a few, it'd sorta be like a bonus.

Re:Over the top (0, Flamebait)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671432)

Hell, you might as well try and take down the police who attempt to bring you in. If you manage to get a few, it'd sorta be like a bonus.
I don't see the problem...

Re:Over the top (1)

beckerist (985855) | more than 7 years ago | (#17672146)

Because during the process of his intrawebs fraud, he had no idea that he'd be caught, let alone charged (read: THE FIRST GUY TO BE CHARGED...) Now seeing that yes, for stealing some poor old ladies credit cards, using them, and trying to convince them that AOL still needs more money (for a service that's been free for months!), you should rot for a long time. The next guy to do this will not only be shaking in his boots, but will most likely think twice (ie: is it worth it? probably not.) Inconveniencing, defrauding and potentially ruining 100 people financially ISN'T on the same "moral" scale, but it sure as hell NEEDS to be punished, and not lightly. Murder : Fraud :: Apples : Oranges.

Re:Over the top (4, Funny)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671656)

"including wire fraud, unauthorized use of credit cards, misuse of the AOL trademark and attempted witness harassment"

He's being charged with improving their reputation and brand name. Bastard.

Re:Over the top (4, Informative)

Peyna (14792) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670478)

They're looking at "statutory maximums" and adding together terms that more than likely will be served concurrently.

In other words, while he could theoretically get 100 years, in reality he's going to probably get 1-2 years tops.

minimum-security resort (1)

vinn01 (178295) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671340)

The worst they would ever do is put him, for a few months, into a white-collar, minimum-security resort. Do you know, they have conjugal visits there.

Re:Over the top (5, Funny)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670482)

I think so, this is probably a "set an example" type of case. Though it depends on how much money he actually stole; if not a huge amount -- serious criminals even if nobody is killed should get serious punishment, and yes I'm thinking corporate crooks here -- then I'd rather see violent criminals in prison instead of him. But that's just off-the-cuff reaction based on skimming the article.

Another off-the-cuff reaction: When the mafia lands in court, the witnesses get whacked. How appropriate is it that a spammer can't accomplish any more than witness harassment? I can only imagine his method: Emails stating "Y t3st1fy? Do and no more v14gr4 for U!"

Re:Over the top (1)

6ame633k (921453) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671766)

I think so, this is probably a "set an example" type of case
oh yeah...the old "example" strategy that serves as a cautionary tale for others...widely utilized by highschool gym teachers across America

Re:Over the top (3, Funny)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671772)

"Y t3st1fy? Do and no more v14gr4 for U!"

Yeah but even for that, 100 years is a pretty stiff sentence

Re:Over the top (4, Funny)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670510)

100 years is probably excessive -- one night might be sufficient...

Inmate: What'cha in for, buddy?

Spammer: I... uh... sent people spam emails... about... male enhancement...

Inmate: That so?!? Hey fellas! Meet my new b*tch... [grinning]

Spammer: GUARD!!!!!!!!

Re:Over the top (3, Funny)

i.r.id10t (595143) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670670)

........... And I, I walked over to the, to the bench there, and there is, Group W's
where they put you if you may not be moral enough to join the army after
committing your special crime, and there was all kinds of mean nasty ugly
looking people on the bench there. Mother rapers. Father stabbers. Father
rapers! Father rapers sitting right there on the bench next to me! And
they was mean and nasty and ugly and horrible crime-type guys sitting on the
bench next to me. And the meanest, ugliest, nastiest one, the meanest
father raper of them all, was coming over to me and he was mean 'n' ugly
'n' nasty 'n' horrible and all kind of things and he sat down next to me
and said, "Kid, whad'ya get?" I said, "I didn't get nothing, I had to pay
$50 and pick up the garbage." He said, "What were you arrested for, kid?"
And I said, "Littering." And they all moved away from me on the bench
there, and the hairy eyeball and all kinds of mean nasty things, till I
said, "And creating a nuisance." And they all came back, shook my hand,
and we had a great time on the bench, talkin about crime, mother stabbing,
father raping, all kinds of groovy things that we was talking about on the
bench. And everything was fine, we was smoking cigarettes and all kinds of
things, until the Sargeant came over..........

Re:Over the top (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670522)

Rapists and muderers usually "face up to" 100s of years of jail time too. Usually, what's handed out is less. And then there is parole and good behavior. The stats you see are what rapists and murderers *end up serving*. No way this guy is serving 100 years, unless he's being made an example out of.

Re:Over the top (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17671640)

Rapists and muderers usually "face up to" 100s of years of jail time too.
Murderers might "face up to" 100 years, but I'm pretty sure rapists spend the majority of their prison time "face down"

Re:Over the top (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670526)

He was convicted of several different offenses including "attempted witness harassment." Undoubtedly some of the convictions carried very stiff penalties and were for things you wouldn't normally associated with just spamming.

Re:Over the top (1)

alshithead (981606) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671244)

"He was convicted of several different offenses including "attempted witness harassment." Undoubtedly some of the convictions carried very stiff penalties and were for things you wouldn't normally associated with just spamming."

Great point! Judges hate it when the accused is convicted of attempted witness harassment. They tend to take a very dim view of folks who attempt to suborn justice. That is only their privilege! :) Really, judges don't like any disrespect to their proceedings.

Re:Over the top (2, Informative)

bziman (223162) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670594)

how... can they justify over 100 years of punishment?

That's a theoretical maximum of getting consecutive sentences of for numerous counts... if he attempted to defraud hundreds of people, it is simply possible that he could get hundreds of years. Unfortunately, these sorts of sentences are rarely handed out for the people who really deserve it -- and I mean the spammers, not the murderers. He'll probably be able to serve many of the sentences concurrently, or he'll make some sort of deal to drop the largest part of the charges -- he still gets whatever sentence the prosecuter feels like, but the court doesn't have to spend the extra time and money proving hundreds of individual charges.

--brian

Re:Over the top (1)

hardburn (141468) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670618)

If it was just spam, I'd agree. But there is also a phishing/fraud case at stake, and then multiplied by potentially thousands of people. Identity theft is potentially a life-ruining event (especially in the US, where your credit rating is used for a lot more than you probably think). Multiply that by thousands, perhaps millions of people, and you have a crime that should be on the same level as murder.

Re:Over the top (1)

bcmbyte (996126) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670624)

I totally agree with the statement. While spamming is at worst a real pain in the ass, at best a hassle, but it doesn't even scratch the surface when compared to the really nasty people in the world. But boy the government sure is sending a message here. Drink and drive and kill someone you'll get a couple of years, send some spam... LIFE

Re:Over the top (1)

Robber Baron (112304) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670632)

If this is relating to computer fraud how the fuck can they justify over 100 years of punishment?
Rapists and murderers get less.
Maybe the problem isn't that this spammer's sentence is too harsh, maybe the problem is the sentences handed down to rapists and murderers are are too lenient.
I don't have a problem with the Enron fraudsters spending the rest of their days behind bars, and the magnitude of fraud that this scumbag is guilty of, is on a similar scale.

I also hope it's hard-core poundin-in-the-ass prison they send him to, and not some freakin club-fed country club.

Re:Over the top (2, Insightful)

inviolet (797804) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670690)

If this is relating to computer fraud how the fuck can they justify over 100 years of punishment?
Rapists and murderers get less.

Consider the total social cost of this dirtbag's activities...

A billion spam emails * 1000 bytes each * ~15 hops each = ~15 TB of traffic

A billion spam emails * ~33% acceptance by POP3 servers * 1000 bytes each * ~2 weeks stored on disk = ~5 TB-days of disk storage

A billion spam emails * ~33% acceptance by POP3 servers * 10% penetration of spam filters * 5 seconds for the user to read and delete = ~5 person-years reading and deleting

Plus all the intangible costs, such as legitimate emails lost due to spam traffic overflowing the mail servers, and people losing money on scam products and the like.

I'd say it's perfectly fair to charge the guy exactly what he cost society: 10 years in jail per billion emails sent. How many billions do you suppose he's sent in his lifetime?

Not to mention all the other, more concrete frauds he was involved in.

Don't believe everything you read... (1)

Vellmont (569020) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670730)


If this is relating to computer fraud how the fuck can they justify over 100 years of punishment?

See, the key phrase in this article is "up to". The journalist or prosecutor arrived at the figure 101 years simply from multiplying the number of crimes he's convicted of by the maximum sentence for each act.

Simply put, there's no way he'll serve anywhere close to that long. Even if by some insane judge sentences him to 101 years in jail, that's a no-brainer that'll get reduced on first appeal.

Re:Don't believe everything you read... (1)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671928)

"Even if by some insane judge sentences him to 101 years in jail, that's a no-brainer that'll get reduced on first appeal"

And even if he doesn't, ya just know he's not gonna server the whole 101 years.

Re:Over the top (1)

Tom (822) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670764)

Rapists and murderers only harm one victim, not millions.

If you break it down to the number of victims, he's probably getting on the order of minutes per victim. A murderer gets years per victim. I think the ratio is fine there.

Re:Over the top (1)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671578)

Rapists and murderers only harm one victim, not millions.
 
If you break it down to the number of victims, he's probably getting on the order of minutes per victim. A murderer gets years per victim. I think the ratio is fine there.
Yeah, think about how long you'd be in jail if you sent millions of spam messages that intentionally killed the recipient!

Re:Over the top (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670896)

Maybe excessive, but there's still a part of me that wants to see him sentenced to being dragged cross country by his nuts.

Re:Over the top (1)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671974)

"being dragged cross country by his nuts"

I don't think his nuts could drag him very far, they lack independant power of movement.

Re:Over the top (1)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670930)

Each count brings a possible maximum sentence. Sum them up, and it could be over 100 years. It's called "sensationalism" and is quite prevalent in mainstream news. I'm guessing his sentence will be harsh as an example, but not more than a decade.

For corporate crooks, they need to start making the punishment fit the crime. If you steal 200 million dollars from your employees retirement before the company goes belly-up, and you get caught: you should be expected to repay that money, PLUS do jail time. Spammers obviously can't give back wasted time, so perhaps jail time is appropriate.

Re:Over the top (2, Insightful)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671116)

if each email received took say 30 seconds to delete *on*average*, multiply that by the millions he sent out. if human lifespan is 80 years, how many lifetimes did he waste? I suspect many lifetimes worth of time wasted.

Re:Over the top (1)

snarfbot (1036906) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671182)

i think the problem is that murder and rape are usually just 1 or 2 counts. and they usually get it dropped to a lower charge, like manslaughter you know, and the sentences in any case are way too short, with good behavior they can get out of jail in less than 10 years easy.

some shitfaced heroin addict goes to jail for much longer than that for possession of his own stash.

oy

Re:Over the top (1)

JudgeFurious (455868) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671238)

Seriously, who can wait that long for the guy to get truly punished? I'm thinking roadside crucifixion fits this one much better.

  It's all just a joke of course until you become the victim of one of these assholes. Then you find yourself online advocating that they be nailed to a wooden cross next to I-10. Hate doesn't even come close to how I feel about these people.

  If I could ever lay my hands on the guy who stole my identity and spent a couple of weeks writing hot checks across Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia I'd make 100 years in prison look like the sweetest of possible mercies.

Re:Over the top (1)

Krow10 (228527) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671488)

I don't like spam but ffs that is so harsh.
It's kinda like the Republican's whining about being shut out of the legislating process as the minority party -- intellectually I agree, but emotionally I can't work up any amount of give-a-fuck. Fuck 'em.

Cheers,
Craig

Re:Over the top (1)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671570)

"how the fuck can they justify over 100 years of punishment?
Rapists and murderers get less"


I'd phrase that as "how the fuck can we justify rapists and murders so much less time in prison, when this guy can get over 100 years".

How quickly someone can get out of prison for destroying a life is where the miscarriage of justice lies.

Re:Over the top (1)

EveLibertine (847955) | more than 7 years ago | (#17672074)

I agree, rapists and murderers should get much harsher punishments. 100 years for spamming is fine the way it is.

That is so fair. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670316)

Glad to see a spammer and monetary felon getting a worse sentence than a murderer get's.

Cross rich people and you get 101 years in prison. Kill a poor guy get 6 years in prison. Yup, really fair.

Re:That is so fair. (3, Informative)

Lothsahn (221388) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670498)

This is because our legal system is based on "counts" of the offense. He sent millions of spam emails. Most murderers don't kill millions of people. He wouldn't have gotten 101 years if he had sent one spam email or even 100.

I'm not saying it's fair or anything, just that's the way it is. Perhaps there should be a mandatory maximum sentence--though that raises a whole other set of problems.

Re:That is so fair. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670748)

I think there shouldn't be a maximum sentence. If somebody sends 1 million spams, I think a sentence of 1 million years is fine. We should be working on ways to keep people from escaping this sentence by unfairly dying before they have done their time.

Re:That is so fair. (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671666)

He wouldn't have gotten 101 years if he had sent one spam email or even 100.
Also, he hasn't gotten anything like 101 years, and you can be fairly certain he won't get anything like 101 years, either. The sum of the maximum sentence permitted in statute for each offense is not the same (or, generally, even remotely similar) to what someone is likely to be sentenced to for a series of offenses for which they are convicted.

Re:That is so fair. (1)

joeyspqr (629639) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671770)

"if you kill a man, you're a murderer ... kill many, you're a conquerer ... kill them all, you're a god"
"Captive Honor" ~ MegaDeth

Re:That is so fair. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17671200)

If someone commits 101 crimes, each of which carries a 1 year sentence, they face 101 years of prison time, which usually is served concurrently. So, 1 year later, they would be out of their 101 year sentence. (Not counting time off for good behavior and such, which if often mandated.) Further, sentences can be suspended after a certain amount of time is served. The suspended sentence acting as a pending enforcement if the spammer spams again (without having to prosecute them again). I have not read the RTFA, of course. Just pointing out that the length of sentence is rarely the stated time. It is often spin giving the impression of either firm or harsh (depending on your point of view) punishment than to indicate the actual amount of time to be served.

Re:That is so fair. (3, Funny)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17672090)

"I have not read the RTFA, of course"

Or figured out what the 'RT' stands for :-p

Durr (4, Insightful)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670330)

Spamming != Phishing? Why not just hit him for fraud instead, other than to show off their new baby?

Re:Durr (1)

Lord_Slepnir (585350) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670560)

He did spam, but most of the years he got were for phishing, which is just fraud.

It would be like if I were to break into someone's house, shoot them, get arrested and the papers were to read "Lord_Slepnir gets Lethal Injection for violating recently passed handgun bill!"

RTFA (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671464)

He did spam, but most of the years he got were for phishing, which is just fraud.


He hasn't gotten any years at all yet, he is due to be sentenced (per TFA) on June 11.

Since, almost certainly, the sentences will run mostly concurrently, it won't really be accurate to say that "most of the years he got" were for one thing or another, since they'll all be the same years.

Re:Durr (1)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671630)

Spamming != Phishing? Why not just hit him for fraud instead, other than to show off their new baby?
Yes, what he did was far and away more than simply sending annoying emails. But if they can use "Spammer sent to slammer" in headlines maybe they'll scare the lightweights out of business.

Thank you (1)

master_kaos (1027308) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670344)

Good, hopefully this will send a message to a few other spammers that they may get caught to. Obviously you can never eliminate spammers due to zombie networks, but nailing a couple people will defiently help. Although maybe there should be a law that jails stupid people for a couple days that click on links in email titled "CL1cK HERE TO 3NLARGE MALE M3MBER"

Re:Thank you (1)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#17672190)

Oo, know all about networks of hard to detect people that are able to hit us while we're at home, at work... what we need is a war; the war on zombies!

Not really a CAN-SPAM victory (2, Insightful)

MrKevvy (85565) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670394)

... Unless the prosecution was for spam alone (ie spam advertising a legal product.) This was just out-and-out fraud. Most spamvertised "products" are illegal anyways (prescription drugs sold without a prescription, phishing, online gambling, etc.) so the CAN-SPAM act isn't needed to prosecute.

Re:Not really a CAN-SPAM victory (4, Insightful)

jfengel (409917) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671204)

It's a useful precedent: if the convictions under CAN-SPAM do hold up, then it will be easier to go after those whose crimes are purely spamming.

At least, it used to be the case that there were people whose sole crime was sending out absurd amounts of clearly unwanted email. ("Clearly unwanted" in the sense that they deliberately provided false information in headers and refused to honor opt-out requests. Providing false information in headers was not in and of itself fraudulent.)

These days, given how much spam goes through bot-nets, there may not be any spammers left who are not guilty of crimes other than sending spam. But it may also be the case that it's hard to convict them on, say, hacking charges, but you could get them on the spam charges.

And conversely, if the appeals court throws out the CAN-SPAM convictions, even if it keeps the other convictions, we'll know that we have to either rewrite the law or depend on the existing fraud laws.

Will it Make a Difference? (3, Interesting)

BoRegardless (721219) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670472)

I hope so but...

Given the creeps anywhere can run these scams outside of N. America, it just means other methods might work better.

We can start by having ISPs who know computers crunching out a 1000 emails at a time in the middle of the night get dumped off the Internet until the user gets a new hard drive or computer.

Re:Will it Make a Difference? (2, Insightful)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670832)

We can start by having ISPs who know computers crunching out a 1000 emails at a time in the middle of the night get dumped off the Internet until the user gets a new hard drive or computer.
That would require a method of ISPs somehow verifying things about the computers or other devices you have hooked up. Lot of worms in that can...

Re:Will it Make a Difference? (1)

ThinkingInBinary (899485) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671860)

That would require a method of ISPs somehow verifying things about the computers or other devices you have hooked up. Lot of worms in that can...

Simple, just monitor port 25 activity. It's probably pretty lightweight to track only SMTP connections to outside servers (heck, many networks ban them) since most connections are to the ISP's own servers. Then just count recipients, and if it passes a truly outrageous threshold, call the customer to inform them. If it continues at high volume for a day or two, shut their account off. (Sort of like the credit card fraud watch software -- notify for slightly suspicious things, and just shut it off for very suspicious things.)

Re:Will it Make a Difference? (1)

kippers (809056) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671744)

Not everyone is in control of their computer when it sends emails. Viruses can also do this.

Yuo fail 1t? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670474)

I sse the same The mobo Blew Lube. This can lead but it's not a

Dude (1)

jorgeuva (963084) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671518)

You're about to go to prison! Shouldn't you be talking with your legal team instead of reading about yourself on Slashdot?

no tax evasion? (4, Interesting)

User 956 (568564) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670502)

I'm surprised they didn't get him for tax evasion [msn.com], too. I mean, the IRS even requires that you pay taxes on stolen property.

Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (1, Flamebait)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670558)

So this guy is up for 101 years for spamming, but some dirt bag that molested his daughter-in-law for 6 years only serves a 4 year sentence.

Yeah, that makes all sorts of sense.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (2, Informative)

Hero Zzyzzx (525153) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670914)

You couldn't possibly be biased, though, Mr. "Isagenix."

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (0, Flamebait)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671106)

Damn right I'm biased. All the spam in the world isn't as bad as a single kid being molested, Mr. "Kook".

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (1)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671294)

So this guy is up for 101 years for spamming, but some dirt bag that molested his daughter-in-law for 6 years only serves a 4 year sentence.

OK, so you didn't read the article. Can't you at least read the summary? Spamming, yes... and dealing with stolen bank account info, fraudulently misrepresenting himself as another company, and witness intimidation, etc. This is someone who's a lot farther along than just some spam monkey, and his actions involved untold thousands of people. So you shouldn't be talking about him getting less time, you should be talking about the child molester getting more.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (1)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671660)

I read the summary, I just didn't want to list the guys whole dossier in my post and generalized it as "spamming".

I never said this guy should get less time, though I do believe 101 years is a bit extreme. I don't think he should be up for parole any sooner than 50 years, however.

I would love to see there be a mandatory order of magnitude on sentences for child molesters, so that if you have been molesting for 5 years, the minimum sentence and soonest you could see parole would be 50 years (5 * 10).

We don't take crimes against children seriously enough in the U.S. and their needs to be much better and harsher sentencing guidelines, IMHO.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (2, Insightful)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671588)

So this guy is up for 101 years for spamming, but some dirt bag that molested his daughter-in-law for 6 years only serves a 4 year sentence.

Yeah, that makes all sorts of sense.


You're comparing the sum of all the maximum sentences for a bunch of offenses, on the one hand, to the actual sentence imposed, on the other. The maximum sentence for sexually abusing a young child even once in most states is something like 10-20 years; so even assuming it occurred only twice a year for six years, the maximum sentence would be far higher than that cited in this case.

In practice, though, sentences for multiple counts are rarely (and, in the federal system, there are sentencing guidelines that assure this is almost never the case) anything like the sum of the maximum sentence available for each of the offenses for which the defendant was convicted.

So, the problem you are seeing is because your comparison is completely invalid.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (1)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671982)

Fine, ignore these two cases and just watch the news for a while. It is very clear that there is NO consistency or common-sense in sentencing in the U.S.

One guy will get thrown under the bus and made an example of for a stupid offense, and the next will get a slap on the wrist for a very serious crime (multiple murders, rapes, molestation, kidnapping, etc).

Take for instance the 2 border security guards, sentenced to 11 and 12 years respectively, IIRC, for failing to file the proper paperwork. Compare that to a habitual sex offender and the destroyed life of his victim, who gets 4 years.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 7 years ago | (#17672076)

Fine, ignore these two cases and just watch the news for a while. It is very clear that there is NO consistency or common-sense in sentencing in the U.S.


The news is selectively presented, by design, to highlight the shocking, unexpected, noteworthy, and unusual. It naturally greatly exaggerates the relative significance of inconsistencies and abnormalities; it also generally provides very little of the context that would explain why those unusual or shocking results occur.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (3, Insightful)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671648)

So this guy is up for 101 years for spamming, but some dirt bag that molested his daughter-in-law for 6 years only serves a 4 year sentence.
 
Yeah, that makes all sorts of sense.
 
 
How do you molest your daughter in law? Since your daughter in law is the woman married to your son, she is an adult, so it would just be what we call "having an affair" (although kind of a creepy one).

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671994)

Since your daughter in law is the woman married to your son, she is an adult


I believe that the age of consent for marriage (especially with parental consent) in many states is lower than the age of consent for sex with someone other than a spouse.

IIRC, the former is 12, or lower, in some states.

So it may be abstractly possible in extreme circumstances.

Re:Don't Spam, Molest Kids Instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17672156)

lol don't bring vlad into this

Re:fagorZ (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670980)

why not change the link to www.goatse.cz [goatse.cz] so it at least shows goatse?

What about foreign based spammers? (3, Insightful)

alshithead (981606) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670614)

This may be a great deterrent for US based spammers but I don't think the foreign based spammers will blink an eye from it.

I would hope that other governments could make similar examples of spammers based from their countries.

Re:What about foreign based spammers? (1)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671230)

the foreign based spammers often collect money on behalf of US-based companies.

just read the articles out there about how many of the spammers's clients can be traced - what good is a mortgage in, say, Korea, to someone in the USA?

Re:What about foreign based spammers? (1)

alshithead (981606) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671304)

"the foreign based spammers often collect money on behalf of US-based companies.

just read the articles out there about how many of the spammers's clients can be traced"

Great point. I didn't even think of that. Maybe we should be going after the spammers's clients too.

101 years... 101 free games... (1)

andrewd18 (989408) | more than 7 years ago | (#17670634)

He is facing a sentence of up to 101 years
Good thing this Slashdot article [slashdot.org] came out before his sentence article did... at least now he knows he can play one free game per year.

Re:101 years... 101 free games... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17671834)

when his cellmates discover what he's in for, he'll be playing games alright... and it won't be stud poker. or, um, maybe it will :-)

A just punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17670688)

I think while he is in prison for those 101 years, he should be required to sit in front of a computer 12 hours a day and filter all the spam for LA County...

I can't take this seriously anymore........ (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671070)

I once misread an article title that was about SPAM, the canned meat substitute.

Ever since then, my mind auto-inserts a connection to the stuff when seeing the word "spam" in ANY context. It is only problematic in the sense that I can't take articles like this seriously when I am thinking canned meat.

I must admit though, it brings a smile to my face when hearing of a possible 100yr sentence being handed down in relation to SPAM crimes.

 

I don't know if that's quite enough (1)

JudgeFurious (455868) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671176)

I was thinking roadside crucifixion fits the bill. I think it's time that good old fashioned punishment like that made a comeback and I can't

CAN-SPAM (4, Interesting)

Phroggy (441) | more than 7 years ago | (#17671664)

You know, the CAN-SPAM Act is often criticized on Slashdot and elsewhere as being toothless and full of loopholes. People think it's a worthless law, because spammers can easily get around it. I disagree. Let me explain.

First of all, what we really want to avoid is any law that inhibits our right to freedom of speech. It's very easy to write a definition of spam that is overly broad, and applies to legitimate messages as well. Let's assume for the moment that this would be a bad thing. I haven't heard any complaints that CAN-SPAM is flawed in this way.

The complaints are that CAN-SPAM doesn't go far enough. Spammers could simply change their spam to comply with the provisions of the law, and suddenly their unwanted junk is no longer technically "spam" in the eyes of the law. In theory, this may be true, but in practice, it's not happening. The law has been in effect for three years now, and spammers still aren't even bothering to pretend to comply with the law, they're just continuing to blatantly disregard it. This means that just about all the spam I get in my inbox (plus all the spam that I would have gotten in my inbox if I didn't have a whole pile of filters in place to block it) is clearly defined as illegal according to CAN-SPAM.

So why am I still getting all this spam? It's not because CAN-SPAM is a bad law. It's not because the spammers have found a loophole, or have changed their spam so it complies with the law. The problem is enforcement: the FTC and FBI don't have the resources to go after these guys. It's been three years, and they've only gotten one conviction.

Yes, some spammers are based outside the US, and while CAN-SPAM may still apply to them because they're sending spam to Americans, they're outside the jurisdiction of our law enforcement agencies. Several other countries have pledged their support in the International War On Spam(TM), but again, somebody has to actually track down the spammers so they can be arrested, and that's what's not happening.

So what's the solution? It's not to pass more laws making spam more illegal than it already is. The solution is for Congress to earmark funding for spam investigation and prosecution. They won't think of it themselves, so somebody has to tell them to do it. So, write to your Senators and Representatives, and tell them you want to see better enforcement!

Now, who's got that list of checkboxes?

hahahaha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17671822)

what idiots would fall for an email from aol threatening to shut off service?!?!? you can't get aol service shut down even if you wanted to. it took me 6 months to get mine shut off. and it only happened when i showed up at the call center in jacksonville fl as an "applicant for a job" and made a big scene. they were NOT happy.

Bizn47ch (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17672018)

It a break, if in time. For all these rules will that should be So there are people channel #GNNA on brain. It is the similarly grisly mire of decay, AMERICA) might be developers these rules will Talk to one of the enjoy the loud was what got me troubles of those Java IRC client to use the GNAA exactly what you've Fucking market has significantly Myself. This isn't the rain..we can be
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