A former intelligence analyst at eBay was sentenced for her role in an aggressive cyberstalking campaign that involved harassing Twitter users, GPS tracking, and delivering unsettling items to victims' homes, such as a bloody pig Halloween mask, a funeral wreath, and a book on surviving the loss of a spouse.
A 28-year-old former eBay contractor Veronica Zea was sentenced to two years probation and a $5,000 fine. Two years ago, she pleaded guilty to running a cyberstalking campaign to tamper with witnesses.
On September 29, James Baugh and David Harville, two former eBay executives, were sentenced based on the same charges. Baugh, former security director, was jailed for 57 months and ordered to pay a $40,000 fine. Harville, director of global resiliency, was sentenced to two years in prison and ordered to pay a $20,000 fine.
Former eBay employees Philip Cooke, Stephanie Popp, Stephanie Stockwell, and Brian Gilbert previously pleaded guilty to harassing a married couple in Natick, Mass. The victims were targeted for publishing a newsletter reporting on the issues of interest to eBay sellers.
According to the Department of Justice (DoJ), senior eBay executives were frustrated with the tone and contents of the newsletter.
Veronica Zea and her co-conspirators engaged in a three-part harassment campaign to influence the victims' reporting about eBay.
"The campaign included sending anonymous and disturbing deliveries to the victims' home; sending private Twitter messages and public tweets criticizing the newsletter's content; threats to visit the victims in Natick; and traveling to Natick to surveil the victims and installing a GPS tracking device on their car," DoJ said.
What is more, the victims received disturbing deliveries to their homes, including a preserved fetal pig, a bloody pig Halloween mask, a funeral wreath, and a book on surviving the loss of a spouse. Pornography addressed to the victims was delivered to their neighbor's house to further intimidate the targets.
The second phase of the campaign involved public tweets and private threatening Twitter messages that appeared as if they were written by eBay sellers unhappy with the newsletter.
The third part of the campaign involved the victims' surveillance.
"On Aug. 15, 2019, Zea traveled from California to Natick with Baugh and Harville to surveil the victims and to install a GPS tracking device on the victims' car. Zea and Harville registered for a software development conference to explain the trip to Boston. The victims spotted the surveillance team and contacted local police," DoJ said.
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