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eBay user given 5-month prison sentence ! - 4/26/2006 7:56:03 AM   

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A Romanian native unhappy with eBay's business practices was sentenced to five months in prison for making e-mailed threats against two of the company's top officers.

Florin Horicianu, a naturalised US citizen living in Ridgewood, NY, also received five months of electronic monitoring and was ordered to stay away from eBay employees and events, according to a statement Tuesday from the US Attorney's office in San Francisco.

Horicianu pleaded guilty in May 2005 to two counts of transmitting threatening interstate communications for sending e-mails to eBay Chief Executive Meg Whitman and Pierre Omidyar, the company's founder and chairman. Among the statements included in the e-mails was "I will haunt and hurt you and your family," according to court documents.

Horicianu, a computer programmer and mechanical engineer, tried to recruit thousands of Romanians to become eBay buyers and sellers. When he pleaded guilty in US District Court in San Jose, he said he had spent thousands of dollars to travel to Romania, where he set up classes for local consumers and taught them how to bid for items on the online auction site.

He claimed eBay, which paid members up to $45 per recruit as part of an affiliate program, owed him as least $7,200 for his activities. He said the company refused to pay after eBay officials became suspicious about the high volume of new accounts being opened from Internet cafes throughout Romania.

Horicianu must report to prison on June 5.

Officials from San Jose-based eBay declined to comment.

Source : SMH
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