Abbott claims that Williams' technique involves sending e-mails with innocent-seeming subject lines designed to encourage recipients to open them ("Order confirmation" or "About last night" being two examples). These e-mails are frequently sent from third-party servers without the permission of the server owners. Abbott also claims that Williams has no affiliation with the companies whose products he purports to sell (including anti-spyware products and online diplomas) but merely receives a commission, and that he includes no contact details in these emails, provides no means for recipients to unsubscribe from further emails, not even an unforged message header.
The state of Texas became involved in 2004 when a server in Dallas was used to send tens of thousands of spam emails to Texans, in violation of both state and federal laws.
If convicted, Williams could face penalties of US$750 per violation of CAN-SPAM, US$25,000 for each day a spam email was sent under the Texas Electronic Mail and Solicitation Act, and US$20,000 per violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.