Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Spammer Going to the Can for Wire Fraud

SIERRA MADRE, CA - MAY 29:  Seventieth anniver...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Notorious spammer Alan Ralsky, 64, and his 38-year-old son-in-law, Scott Bradley, were among five men who pleaded guilty this week in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering, and violating the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003.

Pursuant to their plea agreement, Ralsky faces a $1 million fine and up to 87 months in prison, while Bradley also is subject to a $1 million fine and a maximum 78 months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines. Sentencing is scheduled for October 29, 2009.

A 41-count indictment was returned against the defendants in January 2008. The defendants were accused of engaging in a multimillion dollar international stock fraud scheme that illegally employed bulk commercial emails, or "spam," to drive up Chinese stock prices.

The 108th Congress in 2003 passed the "Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003" or CAN-SPAM Act (15 U.S.C. sec. 7701, P.L.108-187) to regulate interstate commerce by imposing restrictions and penalties on the transmission of unsolicited commercial electronic mail via the Internet. Criminal provisions of the CAN-SPAM act forbid falsifying certain data used in transmitting emails.

Also pleading guilty were John Bown, William Neil, and James Fite, all of California. Ralsky's spamming activities led to his being sued in 2001 by Verizon Communications, Inc., with whom he settled a year later.
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1 comment:

  1. The CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 is too good to be true! Not the letter of the law, but the acronym that the letters create. For once, Congress is leading the nation instead of following with a shovel and a fork.