updated 1/18/2006 6:00:50 PM ET 2006-01-18T23:00:50

The main defendant in the nation's first prosecution under a 2004 federal anti-spam law pleaded guilty Tuesday to three felony charges, federal prosecutors said.

Daniel J. Lin, 30, of West Bloomfield Township faces nearly five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Detroit said.

Two of the counts are fraud charges involving millions of unsolicited spam e-mails sent to computer users. The other is possession of a firearm by a felon, for guns discovered when authorities raided Lin's suburban Detroit home.

He is scheduled to be sentenced May 16 in U.S. District Court in Ann Arbor.

Lin and three other West Bloomfield Township men were identified in court documents as being part of the massive illegal spam scheme.

Court papers described a complex web of corporate identities, bank accounts and electronic storefronts used to send hundreds of thousands of e-mail sales pitches for fraudulent weight-loss and erectile dysfunction products.

The Federal Trade Commission said angry consumers forwarded to authorities more than 490,000 e-mails from the operation from January 2004 to April 2004 _ more than from any other spam outfit worldwide during the same period.

Court records show that charges against the other defendants, James J. Lin, Chris Chung and Mark M. Sadek, have been dismissed. The four were arrested in April 2004.

Copyright 2005 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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