[ISN] Melissa Creator Sentenced On State Charges

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Mon May 06 2002 - 00:28:34 PDT

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    By Dick Kelsey, Newsbytes
    03 May 2002, 4:02 PM CST
    "Melissa" virus author David L. Smith today was sentenced in a New
    Jersey court to 10 years in prison on state charges but will serve
    only a 20-month federal sentence handed down Wednesday.
    Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Lawrence Lawson imposed the
    sentence under a plea agreement with Smith, who named the virus after
    a topless dancer.
    Smith, 34, was handed the maximum "10-year sentence to run
    concurrently and co-terminously to the federal sentence," a court
    spokesman said this afternoon, which means Smith's state time will run
    out when he completes his federal term.
    U.S. District Judge Joseph A. Greenaway Jr. on Wednesday sentenced
    Smith to 20 months in federal prison, opting for a far shorter term
    than federal guidelines allow. Smith will also serve three years of
    supervised release upon completion of his prison stay.
    The federal court's decision on the lesser sentence was "based on
    Smith's level and length of cooperation in other investigations,"  
    according to a news release issued by the U.S. Attorney's office in
    Newark, N.J.
    Smith pleaded guilty in 1999 to federal and state charges related to
    creation of the virus that wreaked havoc among millions of computer
    users worldwide and left monetary damages far greater than the
    $80-million maximum under federal sentencing guidelines.
    The macro virus was contained in a Microsoft Word document attached to
    an e-mail. When opened on a vulnerable system, Melissa sent copies of
    itself to 50 people in the victim's e-mail address book using the
    Microsoft Outlook e-mail program.
    Newsbytes correspondent Brian McWilliams contributed to this story.
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