Tuesday a Canadian man was ordered by a Quebec court to pay $873 million USD (over $1 billion in Canadian currency) to Facebook for hacking into user accounts and posting explicit messages on user walls.
The fine was originally set in place by the California court system back in 2008. Adam Guerbuez was charged $100 USD in damages and $100 USD in punitive damages for each of the alleged 4,366,386 million spam messages which Facebook claimed to have contained ads for penis enlargement pills and other ailments. However Guerbuez failed to pay Facebook and the case was moved to the Quebec Superior Court for local enforcement.
"I don't spam," Guerbuez said after the Canadian courts ruled again in Facebook's favor on Tuesday. "I've never admitted any guilt on anything they accused [of] me, and I won't."
He said that he originally didn't contest the California suit because the fight would have cost too much. "It would have cost me a fortune to defend myself in a foreign jurisdiction," he added. "For a major trial like that, it would have been at least $100,000. They decided to issue a judgment by default and bring it to a Quebec judge to get it enforced here."
But now he owes $873 million... or maybe not. Guerbuez filed for bankruptcy back in August and listed Facebook as one of the creditors. Although he denies spamming all those Facebook accounts, he seemingly admitted to his mass-marketing skills, calling the whole fiasco a blessing in disguise. In fact, the drama has brought attention to his business as an internet marketer.
"People know what I'm capable of doing: large-scale marketing," he said.
Guerbuez claims that a potential book deal and a movie deal are in the works. He won't be able to promote on Facebook however, as he's been banned from the site.