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#Former eBay workers plead guilty to cyberstalking couple

#Former eBay workers plead guilty to cyberstalking couple

Two former eBay intelligence employees have pleaded guilty in a cyberstalking campaign against a Massachusetts couple — whose newsletter was critical of the company – in which they sent them live cockroaches, a fetal pig and a bloody pig mask, officials said.

Stephanie Popp, 33, and Veronica Zea, 26, and several other employees harassed the couple on Twitter and sent them the disturbing items in the mail, federal prosecutors said in Boston.

Popp, the e-commerce giant’s former senior manager of global intelligence, and Zea, a contractor who worked as an intelligence analyst, pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiring to commit cyberstalking and conspiring to tamper with a witness, according to Reuters.

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They are among seven former employees who prosecutors said targeted the couple in Natick, Massachusetts. Three others are expected to plead guilty later this month.

Prosecutors said they also sent porn in the couple’s name to neighbors, planned to install a GPS device in their vehicle, posted their names and address online and encouraged strangers to knock on their door.

Other items sent included a funeral wreath and a book on surviving the loss of a spouse, according to the prosecutor.

United States District Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew E. Lelling (2nd from left)) announces the charges of conspiracy to commit cyberstalking.
United States District Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew E. Lelling (2nd from left)) announces the charges of conspiracy to commit cyberstalking.EPA

The couple was targeted after their online outlet – EcommerceBytes — published an article about a lawsuit filed by eBay accusing Amazon of poaching its sellers, officials said.

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After the newsletter published the article, two executives sent or forwarded text messages saying it was time to “take down” the editor of the newsletter, according to Masslive.com.

Prosecutors plan to recommend prison sentences of 41 months for Popp, and 30 months for Zea when they are sentenced in February. Both of them are from San Jose, California, where eBay is headquartered.

With Post wires

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