For the district court of Zurich, it is a clear thing. René K.* (48) has ripped off with premium-rate numbers countless people, who had been looking on the Internet or in business directories to Support your program or your device from Apple, Samsung, Microsoft or Google (LOOK told).

Because of commercial fraud, the court sentenced the self-employed computer scientists to 3.5 years of imprisonment and a fine of 220 daily rates à 30 francs, 6600 Swiss francs. The Accused must take the stick, minus the 78 days he has already been in custody legend spread about.

Thus, the district court fully complies with the request of the public Prosecutor. Only the civil claim of Microsoft is dismissed. The company receives a process compensation of 10’500 Swiss francs.

K. will.

not to defend, The judgment is not yet final, and the lawyer of René K. announced to already appeal Because in court, the Accused had denied to have someone fraudulently deceived.

René K. was arrested in August 2016, and then spent about two months in pretrial detention. The Prosecutor accused him of that he had also operated after a conviction in 2010, so-called value-added service numbers, 0900 prefix, and thus commercially cheated.

1.99 Fr. per Minute

And that worked so: René K. set various telephone numbers, which callers cost 1.99 francs per Minute. In business directories and in listings of the Google search, he offered his services, for example, under the keyword “Apple Support”.

The same mesh, the computer scientist pulled even with the well-known brands Samsung, Microsoft and Google. User could think that they would call the official support number.

The Prosecutor alleged that the accused also, he did not can offer no employees of the advertised 24-hour Support. The largest part of the calls was directly to the relevant support numbers of the manufacturers, which would have been free or much cheaper.

had been when René K. have decreased, according to “a short, insignificant conversation,” the official telephone numbers redirected. At each redirection, the caller had to pay the 1.99 CHF per Minute more – until the end of the call. In the examined period of almost a year, the Accused person has generated, according to the Prosecutor, about 220’000 Swiss francs unlawfully.

“The customers were satisfied with the service”

A very different Version of the story presented by the opposing side in court. The defender said that “it is not the fine type of transaction” to require the forwarding to the official Support 1.99 francs per Minute. But it was also not punishable by law. Also, the well-known and undisputed information services would like to do.

The Accused have believed in two months of 1043 Call at least 283 personally. “The customers were with his service satisfactory, there were hardly any complaints, and also the public Prosecutor has not found any Victims,” said the defender. Moreover, had always been transparent, what is the call cost.

fraud or not? For the district court of Zurich, the answer was clear. Now we must deal with the Supreme court with the question.

* the Name has been changed