MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: multipart/related; boundary="----=_NextPart_01C612BA.02077CE0" This document is a Single File Web Page, also known as a Web Archive file. If you are seeing this message, your browser or editor doesn't support Web Archive files. Please download a browser that supports Web Archive, such as Microsoft Internet Explorer. ------=_NextPart_01C612BA.02077CE0 Content-Location: file:///C:/542B4C8D/yahoo_defendants_accused_of_sending_spam.htm Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable Content-Type: text/html; charset="us-ascii" Defendants Accused of Sending Spam - Yahoo News/AP

http://story.news.yahoo.com/n= ews?tmpl=3Dstory&ncid=3D&e=3D7&u=3D/ap/20041026/ap_on_hi_te/spa= m_trial

 

 

 

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=  

Defendants Accused= of Sending Spam

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By MATTHEW BARAKAT, Associated Press Writer

 

LEESBURG, Va. - Three people who allegedly sent America Online customers millions of junk e-mail messages touting penny stocks and other Internet gimmicks went on trial Tuesday in t= he nation's first such felony case.

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The defendants are= being tried under a 2003 Virginia anti-spam law that prosecutors say is the harsh= est of its kind in the nation.

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The three face up = to 15 years in prison if convicted on all three counts.

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Assistant Attorney General Russell McGuire told jurors that on one day alone in July 2003, defendant Jeremy Jaynes sent or attempted to send 7.7 million e-mail messag= es to AOL customers using false identities or bogus company names. The goal of= the messages was to sell software that would allow a person to work from home a= s a "FedEx refund processor" or that would help them pick the right p= enny stocks.

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He said the suspec= ts used false identities to evade AOL's spam filters.

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"When you mas= querade your identity, that's when you have a problem," McGuire said.

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Defense lawyers countered that sending spam is not illegal under Virginia law unless prosecutors can prove that the defendants intentionally masked its origin a= nd can prove that the junk e-mail was unsolicited. They said prosecutors will = be unable to meet that burden.

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"Marketing vi= a the Internet is not a crime," said Thomas Mulrine, attorney for defendant Jessica DeGroot. "It may be annoying to you, but it's not a crime to market on the Internet."

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Jaynes and DeGroot= , who are siblings, and the third defendant, Richard Rutkowski, are all from the Raleigh, N.C., area, but are on trial in Virginia because they allegedly se= nt their spam to customers of AOL, which has its servers at its Virginia headquarters.

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While other states= have passed spam laws in recent years, Virginia authorities say theirs goes furt= her than others because it gives prosecutors the power to seize assets from tho= se sending bulk e-mail while imposing up to five years in prison. <= /span>

 

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