Many vie for the title, but only one can be crowned the true Spam King, Bane of Internet Users.

(© PC World)As more and more spammers are arrested, prosecuted and sued under state and federal anti-spam statutes, there's one thing you can count on: Someone somewhere will invariably call the targeted spammer a "spam king."

It seems the bulk e-mail industry has more kings than a pinochle deck. But who is really the king of kings? The following 10 spammers are all heavyweight contenders for the crown.

Half of them have done time or are still guests of the federal government. Two are dead. Most of the rest have paid millions in fines to the Federal Trade Commission and/or in damages to private companies.

Which one truly deserves the title of king? Read on to find out.



Adam Vitale Adam Vitale

Aliases: batch1, n1hustler4life

Current status: Serving 30 months in federal prison

Spam royalty rank: Lord of license plates

Along with partner Todd Moeller, Vitale was part of the g00dfellas spam gang, which specialized in pump-and-dump spam -- artificially boosting a worthless company's stock price so insiders can dump the shares at a profit. In July 2008, Vitale pleaded guilty to violating the federal CAN-SPAM Act by flooding 1.3 million AOL e-mail addresses with spam in the space of a week. Not your typical geek gone bad, Vitale's rap sheet boasted 22 prior convictions. He had a reputation for welshing on his partners -- no wonder he got ratted out by a confidential informant working with the U.S. Secret Service. A plea bargain netted Vitale a 30-month sentence and a $180,000 fine. (Partner-in-crime Moeller got 27 months.)

At one point, the Brooklyn-born, 28-year-old Vitale boasted about making more than $40,000 a week. Now he'll be making license plates at a federal penitentiary.


Read about other spam kings here.

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Date: 9 Dec 2008 | Author: mesmerX | Category: News | Views: 2327

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