by Mike Masnick
Mon, Feb 25th 2008 6:48am
Earlier this month, we pointed to the case of a Moroccan computer engineer who was arrested, supposedly for "stealing" the Moroccan prince's profile on Facebook. As we noted in the post, the original details weren't clear on whether the guy had somehow gained control over the prince's actual Facebook page (which seemed unlikely) or if he'd just set up a fake profile. Further details revealed, indeed, that the guy had merely set up a fake profile of the prince for fun. Given how common fake profiles of celebrities are on Facebook, it seems rather ridiculous to consider that being akin to identity fraud. Apparently, however, the judicial system in Morocco feels differently. The guy in question has now been sentenced to three years in jail. This seems ridiculously excessive, especially since it doesn't sound like the fake profile was negative in anyway. The guy, Fouad Mourtada, claims to be a fan of the prince who just saw the opportunity to have a bit of fun in setting up a profile for him. It's difficult to see how any court with any sense of reason could consider that to be the equivalent of identity fraud.
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