FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
News media information 202/418-0500
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
May 25, 2001
NEWS MEDIA CONTACT:|
John Winston (202) 418-7450
Washington, D.C. - Today, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that an investigation by the FCC's Enforcement Bureau led to the arrest of Mr. Ibar (Robert) Mohamed for operating an unlicensed FM radio station on 89.3 MHz in Queens, NY and Brooklyn, NY. The United States Marshals Service arrested Mr. Mohamed on May 22, 2001, working in conjunction with FCC Agents and the Office of the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.
Prior FCC enforcement actions had failed to deter Mr. Mohamed's unlicensed operation of the FM station. The FCC, on more than one occasion, had issued notices to Mr. Mohamed directing him to cease operation of the unlicensed station. Further, the U.S. Marshal's Service, in conjunction with the United States Attorney's Office and the FCC, had seized his radio equipment on two previous occasions.
The operation of an unlicensed broadcast station is a violation of Section 301 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended. Operators of illegal unlicensed broadcast stations may be subject to monetary penalties of up to $11,000 per violation, seizure by court order of all radio equipment involved in the operation, and court order directing that they cease operation of the unlicensed station. In addition, unlicensed operators may be subject to criminal sanctions, including fines and imprisonment. In the last 18 months, investigations of unlicensed broadcast operations by the FCC's Enforcement Bureau have resulted in the shutdown of over 300 unlicensed stations.