THE PROPRIETOR who ran a spectacles selling website with an iron fist has been sentenced to four years in prison for threatening customers that complained.
Vitaly Borker, 35, terrorised his customers according to a report from the Associated Press, and issued some very nasty threats against them.
The AP reports that US District Court Judge Richard Sullivan considered that this deserved a four year jail sentence and around $100,000 in fines and restitution. "You were terrifying people, putting them in fear of their lives, of being viciously raped," the judge said.
Several people complained to the police after their complaints were greeted by Borker with threats of violence including things like, "I hope you die. I want to slice your legs off," and worse.
Borker, who seems to have drink, drugs and anger problems, seemed genuinely sorry, and in court he said that he never intended to carry out any of his threats.
One woman, though, who tried to use the website's money back guarantee was threatened for six weeks, according to the report.
Borker's case is quite notorious, and in late 2010 he bragged in a report at the New York Times (paywalled) that his treatment of customers was helping to push up his ranking in Google search results.
Google, shocked by this, posted a blog in which it said that being bad to your customers was not considered good form and is not good for business.
Google revised its search algorithm to discourage such behaviour and was happy to say that "being bad is, and hopefully will always be, bad for business in Google's search results". µ
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