Posted by: Ken Harthun
Botnet, Cybercrime, E-mail scam, Scam, spam
Once again, I’m behind on the news. This Security Fix report is almost a week old:
Alan Ralsky, a 64-year-old Michigan man that federal investigators say was among the world’s top spam kingpins, pleaded guilty on Monday to running a multi-million dollar international stock fraud scam powered by junk e-mail.
Ralsky … and his son-in-law and chief financial officer Scott K. Bradley, 38, also of Michigan, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering and to violate the CAN-SPAM Act.
Under the terms of his plea agreement, Ralsky faces a federal prison sentence of 87 months and a fine of $1 million. He allegedly earned up to $3 million on the Chinese penny stock scam that he promoted using junk mail sent out by various botnets. It’s interesting that the plea agreement doesn’t call for the forfeiture of his profits. So, he’ll spend his time in a minimum-security “camp” at taxpayer expense and, probably get released well before his full sentence is up the while earning interest on the money he has squirreled away somewhere.
BTW, my apologies for being lax in keeping this blog up to date. I do have an excuse: I tore ligaments in my left hip and have been unable to sit, stand or lie down for the better part of two weeks. Look for a more regular posting schedule next month.