Serial Spammer loses appeal
From Virus Bulletin 07/03/08:
US spammer Jeremy Jaynes, the first spammer convicted in a felony case, has had his last appeal against the conviction, brought on freedom of speech grounds, turned down by a Virginia supreme court.
After a 2003 spamming spree accounting for several million messages in a two-month period, Jaynes was convicted under Virginia state anti-spam laws, which specify a maximum of 10,000 emails in a day before the case reaches felony levels, and was sentenced to nine years imprisonment. The case preceded the introduction of federal CAN-SPAM regulations.
You’ve got to hand it to him for trying that line of defence, I suppose. But he and his legal team must have always known that it was going to be a long-shot. Let’s face it: the argument that a conviction against his spamming antics was an infringement to his right to free speech was never going to stick, regardless of what angle it was approached from. Not even in America.
Spam is widely regarded as one of the banes of the internet and naturally, a spammer is never going to garner much public support. Quite rightly, too; they are a menace to the internet and society as a whole. Spam clogs up inboxes, thwarts productivity and, perhaps most importantly, represents a major source of online crime in which a shockingly high number of people are taken in by the bogus messages and defrauded out of money. As well as educating the public and technological advances designed to combat spam, going after the source of such crime is absolutely the right way to fight it. The fact Jaynes’ latest, fanciful appeal was shot down in flames by the US court can be celebrated as (minor) victory in the fight against the scourge of internet junk mail.