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 Wednesday, November 19, 2008
US 'cyber-bullying' case begins

Initial jury selection has begun in the trial of a Missouri woman alleged to have used a fake MySpace profile to bully a girl who later killed herself.

Lori Drew, 49, allegedly posed as a boy on the website to befriend Megan Meier, 13, who hanged herself after the "boy" broke off the virtual relationship.

Ms Drew denies charges of conspiracy and accessing protected computers without authorisation.

The trial is being seen as a landmark case concerning internet law.

Megan, a neighbour of Ms Drew in St Louis and a former friend of her daughter, took her own life in October 2006.

It is alleged that she killed herself after receiving several cruel messages from a fictitious 16-year-old boy named Josh Evans, including one saying the world would be better off without her.

Prosecutors say Ms Drew and several others created the boy on MySpace, the social networking website, after Megan Meier fell out with her daughter.

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