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After 27 million spam messages, 'Spam King' sentenced to 30 months in prison, fined $310,000

The self-proclaimed "Spam King", whose real name is Sanford Wallace has been sentenced to 30 months in jail and fined $310,000 after he pleaded guilty to one count of fraud and related activities, and another count of criminal contempt in August 2015. During the period of 2008-2009, Wallace, who resides in Las Vegas, was responsible for sending over 27 million messages to people on Facebook, with malicious links to external websites that stole log-in credentials.

Prosecutors wanted the judge to sentence Wallace to 36 months in prison instead of 30 months, stating that:

The defendant’s history demonstrates that he has yet to suffer a consequence – other than a default judgment that cannot be collected -- for his spamming activities. A sentence of 36 months’ imprisonment will impress upon the defendant the seriousness of his actions and deter him from engaging in similar conduct again.

Wallace's activities during 2008-2009 compromised nearly 500,000 Facebook accounts, with confidential credentials and friend lists illegally obtained from them. He also spammed users by sending them links to other websites and then earning money through the traffic directed to those websites.

Interestingly enough, this isn't Wallace's first attempt at fraud. According to reports, back in 1991, he flooded people with junk faxes and has even faced numerous lawsuits filed by Facebook, AOL, MySpace and others since then. The "default judgment" mentioned in the prosecutors' statement is actually a reference to an instance back in 2009 when Wallace was fined $1,000,000,000 for online fraud, an amount he was unable to pay.

Source: Ars Technica via Engadget | Gavel on court desk image via Shutterstock

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