Frankly, despite being an Internet lawyer, I took a lot of grief from Perry Belcher defenders for posting Perry Belcher – The Arrest of an Internet Marketer. The post was not an attack on Belcher but rather a warning to all Internet marketers about the type of behavior that draws unwanted attention from the government.
Some flames accused me of attacking Ryan Deiss in the process. While it is true that Deiss is Belcher’s friend and supporter, it is insane to infer that pointing out Belcher’s arrest somehow meant I was going after Deiss too. One big difference between the two is that Deiss has an Internet lawyer and Perry didn’t.
Now back to Perry Belcher. According to The Memphis Commercial Appeal (Shelby County man sentenced for health-remedy scam), Belcher has pled guilty to computer fraud, received a 10-year suspended sentence, forfeited many websites, and more than $1 million in assets as part of the plea agreement. Think of how much he could have saved by consulting with an Internet lawyer before heading down this path.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBsS2BbkmlY
The next time you consider treading into gray or black hat Internet marketing tactics, consider what has happened to Perry Belcher. You’ll want to talk with your Internet lawyer so you don’t have to hire a criminal one instead to defend you.
I have no doubt that he’ll rebound from the experience and do well if he positions himself in Internet marketing circles as a martyr to a government witch hunt.
But that’s beside the point. It could have been avoided. And you can learn from his experience to prevent it from happening to you.
Hat tip to the AP – Fake health care scam draws guilty plea in Memphis.
What do you think about the plea deal? As an Internet lawyer, I’ve got my own thoughts on the issue. What about you?
Was Belcher picked upon? Did he get a fair deal? Was the sentence a slap on the wrist? Should Perry Belcher victims receive restitution from him?
03/08/09 Update – Tenn. auctions off fortune amassed by Internet scam artist.
08/30/09 Update – Perry Belcher’s criminal records are now available for download.[optin-cat id=7577]