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Teacher accused of forgery, sending lewd spam e-mail


December 8, 2001

Seoul police yesterday nabbed a local high school teacher who allegedly used students' personal information to send lewd spam e-mail promoting identification numbers and passwords for an Internet pornography site.

The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency's cyber-crime investigation unit said it sought an arrest warrant yesterday for the 38-year-old suspect, identified by his family name Oh, on charges of forgery and violation of resident registration laws.

Officials claim that since September, Oh has been using about a million different e-mail accounts to distribute obscene spam e-mail, or "junk mail," accompanying an advertisement for identification numbers and passwords that provide access to a pornography site.

He allegedly bought accounts for 500,000 won from an Internet bulletin board, officials said.

Police believe the suspect has so far made more than a million won from the sales of 103 identification numbers and passwords, which cost 10,000 won each.

Oh allegedly covered his tracks by establishing a new e-mail account for messages from prospective customers, according to officials.

They also claim Oh illegally made 40 new residential registration numbers.

"Not only is this case shocking because it is the first of its kind in which a person has purchased e-mail accounts over the Internet to commit a crime, but also because it involves a teacher who stole and made fraudulent use of students' personal information," said a police spokesman.

Among the victimized students were three from his homeroom class.

"Although the act of sending spam e-mail can be settled with a fine, we're concerned about how to penalize Oh for misappropriating other people's personal information to commit other crimes," the police spokesman said.

By Yoo Soh-jung. (C) Copyright 2000 Digital Korea Herald


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