Melissa virus author arrested

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Melissa virus author arrested

Police arrested a 30-year-old New Jersey man accused of authoring the Melissa macro virus.

A lead provided by America Online helped law enforcement authorities to trace the past week’s worldwide virus rampage back to David L. Smith, a 30-year-old network programmer who was arrested Thursday night at his brother’s house in Eatontown, N.J.

Smith, of Aberdeen, N.J., was released on $100,000 bail Friday morning. He will be arraigned on Monday, facing charges including interruption of public communications, conspiracy to commit the offense, attempt to commit the offense and third-degree theft of computer service.

All together, the charges carry a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison and a $480,000 fine.

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