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Hacker breaks into Brazilian president's e-mail account

December 1, 2000 

RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov 30 (AFP) - A municipal police officer has been arrested and charged with breaking into the electronic mail account of Brazilian President Fernando Henrique Cardoso and sending messages in his name to other government officials, federal police officials said Thursday.

Marco Antonio Nunez Pereira, 42, regularly sent messages to government ministers and other high officials using Cardoso's e-mail account, police investigator Jarilson Rodriguez said. The messages were not threatening or erotic, police said, but attracted attention, because they were "too unsophisticated."

"He wanted to prove that, like him, anyone had the power to send an e-mail in the name of the president," Rodriguez told the Brazilian Estado news agency.

Jorge Bornhausen, president of the Cardoso-allied Liberal Front Party, said the hacker sent him a respectful message advising him to visit a web site containing games for adolescents.

Federal police arrested Pereira on Thursday at his home in the Laranjeiras neighborhood of the city, and seized his computer equipment.

© 2000 Agence France-Presse

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