A New York-based internet spammer has been sentenced to 30 months in prison and a hefty $180,000 fine for his nefarious activities. Adam Vitale was busted in a sting operation by law enforcement officials who hired him to spam out messages promoting an alleged security product in exchange for half of the profits from sales.

Vitale and his accomplice, Todd Moeller, managed to send around 250,000 spam messages to more than 1.2 million e-mail addresses belonging to AOL subscribers in less than a week. The pair got around AOL's filter system by using compromised PCs to relay the emails and change their header information so they could not be traced.

Vitale already had 22 prior convictions and was investigated for running a prostitution ring via Craigslist - although he has not been charged over the latter. Moeller was sentenced last November to 27 months for his role in the scheme and was ordered to forfeit $183,000 in profit gained from spamming.