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Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. Broussard, Louisiana
) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) File No.: EB-FIELDSCR-12-00002428 NAL/Acct. No.:
201332620001 FRN: 0022598981
NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE AND ORDER
Adopted: April 9, 2013 Released: April 9, 2013
By the Commission: Commissioner McDowell not participating.
1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order (NAL),
we find that Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. (Taylor Oilfield)^
apparently willfully and repeatedly violated Sections 301, 302(b), and
333 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (Act),^ and Sections
2.803(g) and 15.1(c) of the Commission's rules (Rules)^ by operating
multiple cellular phone jammers (jammers or signal jammers) in
Broussard, Louisiana. We further find that to facilitate this unlawful
operation, Taylor Oilfield imported five illegal signal jamming
devices in violation of Section 302(b) of the Act and Sections 2.1203
and 2.1204 of the Rules.^ We conclude that Taylor Oilfield is
apparently liable for a forfeiture in the amount of one hundred twenty
six thousand dollars ($126,000).^
2. Signal jamming devices operate by transmitting powerful radio signals
that overpower, jam, or interfere with authorized communications.
While these devices have been marketed with increasing frequency over
the Internet, with limited exception, they have no lawful use in the
United States.^ Jammers are not only designed to impede authorized
communications and thereby interfere with the rights of legitimate
spectrum users and the general public, but also are inherently unsafe.
For example, jammers can be used to disrupt critical public safety
communications, placing first responders like law enforcement and fire
fighting personnel--as well as the public they are charged with
protecting--at great risk. Similarly, jammers can endanger life and
property by preventing individuals from making 9-1-1 or other
emergency calls. In order to protect the public and preserve
unfettered access to emergency and other communications services, the
Act generally prohibits the importation, use, marketing, manufacture,
and sale of jammers.^ The Commission has issued several enforcement
advisories and consumer alerts emphasizing the importance of strict
compliance in this area and encouraging public participation through
the Commission's jammer tip line.^ We expect individuals and
businesses, like Taylor Oilfield, to take immediate steps to ensure
compliance and to avoid any recurrence of this type of misconduct,
including ceasing operation of any signal jamming devices that may be
in their possession, custody or control. We also strongly encourage
all users of these devices to voluntarily relinquish them to
3. Pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 403 of the Communications Act,^
we direct Taylor Oilfield to submit, no later than thirty (30)
calendar days after the release date of this NAL, a statement signed
under penalty of perjury providing information concerning the
source(s) from which it purchased or received the jamming devices it
previously had in its possession or any such devices it may have
4. On May 18, 2012, the Bureau received an anonymous complaint alleging
that Taylor Oilfield was operating signal jammers to prevent its
employees from using their cell phones.^ An agent from the
Enforcement Bureau's New Orleans Field Office (New Orleans Office)
immediately investigated this matter. On May 21, 2012, the agent
determined, using direction finding techniques, that strong wideband
emissions in the 850-900 MHz band, encompassing the cellular band of
824-924 MHz, were emanating from Taylor Oilfield's property in
Broussard, Louisiana (hereinafter the "worksite"). The agent further
determined that the source of these emissions was one or more signal
jammers. The agent interviewed the manager of Taylor Oilfield, who
admitted that Taylor Oilfield had purchased five cellular jammers
online (which were shipped from overseas) and operated four jammers at
the worksite for a few months. The manager also claimed that Taylor
Oilfield utilized the jamming devices to prevent its employees from
using their cellular phones while working, apparently following a
near-miss industrial accident that allegedly was partially
attributable to employee cell phone use. The manager then showed the
agent the locations of four jammers that were installed on its
building rafters and one jammer that had not yet been installed. The
manager voluntarily surrendered the uninstalled jammer, and three days
later, on May 24, 2012, voluntarily surrendered the remaining jamming
devices.^ That same day, after the jammers had been relinquished, a
New Orleans Office agent observed that the unauthorized signals in the
cellular bands had ceased.
A. Applicable Law
5. Federal law prohibits the importation and operation of jamming devices
in the United States and its territories. Section 301 of the Act
prohibits the use or operation of "any apparatus for the transmission
of energy or communications or signals by radio" within the United
States unless such use is licensed or authorized.^ Section 333 of the
Act states that "[n]o person shall willfully or maliciously interfere
with or cause interference to any radio communications of any station
licensed or authorized by or under this Act or operated by the United
States Government."^ In addition, Section 302(b) of the Act provides
that "[n]o person shall manufacture, import, sell, offer for sale, or
ship devices or home electronic equipment and systems, or use devices,
which fail to comply with regulations promulgated pursuant to this
6. The applicable implementing regulations for Section 302(b) of the Act
are set forth in Sections 2.803, 2.1203, 2.1204, 15.201, and 15.3(o)
of the Rules.^ Section 2.803(g) of the Rules provides in relevant part
radio frequency devices that could not be authorized or legally operated
under the current rules . . . shall not be operated, advertised,
displayed, offered for sale or lease, sold or leased, or otherwise
marketed . . . absent a license issued under part 5 of this chapter or a
special temporary authorization issued by the Commission.^
Section 2.1203 of the Rules states that "[n]o radio frequency device may
be imported into the Customs territory of the United States unless the
importer . . . declares that the device meets one of the conditions for
entry set out in this section."^ Section 2.1204(a)(1) of the Rules further
indicates that "[r]adio frequency devices may be imported only if one or
more [import] conditions are met."^ In addition and pursuant to Sections
15.1(c) and 15.201(b) of the Rules,^ intentional radiators^ cannot be
operated in the United States or its territories unless they have first
been authorized in accordance with the Commission's certification
7. Jamming devices, however, cannot be certified or authorized because
their primary purpose is to block or interfere with authorized radio
communications. Thus, jamming devices such as the ones used by Taylor
Oilfield cannot comply with the FCC's technical standards and
therefore cannot be operated or imported lawfully in the United States
or its territories. We again emphasize that under Section 302(b) of
the Act, radio frequency devices like signal jamming devices are per
se illegal because they are designed to compromise the integrity of
the nation's communications infrastructure.^ As such, signal jammers
may only be imported pursuant to the narrow statutory exceptions in
Section 302(c) of the Act, and the import conditions in Section 2.1204
of the Rules are otherwise inapplicable to these devices.^
B. Illegal Operation of Multiple Cellular Jamming Devices
8. As discussed above, an agent from the New Orleans Office observed four
cellular jammers in use at Taylor Oilfield's worksite. Taylor
Oilfield's manager admitted to the agent that these jammers had been
in operation for a few months. While such use may have been
non-malicious, we are mindful that in an emergency, cellular phones
can provide life-saving access to 9-1-1 and police, ambulance, and
fire department services. We also recognize that signal jamming
devices generally do not discriminate between desirable and
undesirable communications.^ Thus, based on the evidence before us, we
find that Taylor Oilfield apparently willfully and repeatedly
violated Sections 301, 302(b), and 333 of the Act, and Sections
2.803(g) and 15.1(c) of the Rules by operating multiple cellular
jammers at its worksite. ^ ^
C. Importation of Illegal Jamming Devices; Reporting Requirement
9. As discussed above, Section 302(b) of the Act and Sections 2.1203 and
2.1204 of the Rules prohibit the importation of illegal signal jamming
devices.^ Any person or entity that purchases a signal jamming device
online and has it shipped to the United States from a foreign source
is the importer and has violated these provisions.^ On May 21, 2012,
Taylor Oilfield's manager admitted that the jammers at issue were
purchased from an online retailer and shipped into the United States
from overseas. He provided a copy of an invoice for two of the jamming
devices, which specified that the jammers were made in and shipped
from China. Accordingly, we find that Taylor Oilfield imported illegal
jamming devices in violation of Section 302(b) of the Act and Sections
2.1203 and 2.1204 of the Rules.
10. Pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 403 of the Communications Act,^
we direct Taylor Oilfield to submit a written statement,^ signed under
penalty of perjury by an officer or director of Taylor Oilfield,
providing contact information for the seller and any and all
information concerning the source(s) from which it purchased or
received the five jammers it previously had in its possession or any
such devices it may have subsequently acquired, including all
information or documents regarding the sale or shipment of the
devices. This statement must be provided to the New Orleans Office at
the address listed in paragraph 22 below within thirty (30) calendar
days after the release date of this NAL.
D. Proposed Forfeiture
11. Section 503(b) of the Act provides that any person who willfully or
repeatedly fails to comply substantially with the terms and conditions
of any license, or willfully or repeatedly fails to comply with any of
the provisions of the Act or of any rule, regulation, or order issued
by the Commission thereunder, shall be liable for a forfeiture
penalty.^ Pursuant to the Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and
Section 1.80 of the Rules, the base forfeiture amounts for (1)
operation without an instrument of authorization is $10,000, (2) use
of unauthorized or illegal equipment is $5,000, and (3) interference
to authorized communications is $7,000.^ The Commission retains the
discretion, however, to issue a higher or lower forfeiture than
provided in the Forfeiture Policy Statement or to apply alternative or
additional sanctions as permitted by the statute.^ For violations of
the signal jamming prohibition, the Communications Act authorizes
monetary forfeitures of up to $16,000 for each violation or, in the
case of a continuing violation, the Commission may impose monetary
forfeitures of up to $16,000 for each day of such continuing violation
up to a maximum forfeiture of $112,500 for any single act or failure
to act.^ For instance, the Commission could impose separate
forfeitures for each signal jammer used and/or for each day on which a
signal jammer is operated.
12. We are mindful of the serious risks posed by signal jamming devices
and the apparent need to provide greater incentives for individuals
and businesses to cease the operation of these devices altogether.^
Applying the approach in the Supply Room NAL, we will impose a
separate forfeiture for each signal jamming device that is illegally
operated in violation of the Act and our Rules,^ upwardly or
downwardly adjusting the resulting base forfeiture based on the
particular circumstances.^ We caution Taylor Oilfield and other
potential violators that going forward, and as circumstances warrant,
we may pursue alternative or more aggressive sanctions, should the
approach set forth in this NAL prove ineffective in deterring the
unlawful operation of jamming devices.
13. Consistent with this approach, we find that Taylor Oilfield apparently
committed twelve separate violations of the Act and our Rules, three
separate violations for each jammer at issue.^ Based on the evidence
in the record, we further find that these violations were continuing
violations, which lasted for at least a few months. In assessing the
appropriate monetary penalty for this misconduct, we must take into
account the statutory factors set forth in Section 503(b)(2)(E) of the
Act, which include the nature, circumstances, extent, and gravity of
the violations, and with respect to the violator, the degree of
culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability to pay, and other
such matters as justice may require.^ Taylor Oilfield operated
multiple radio frequency devices that are inherently illegal and
prohibited for consumer use in the United States. In fact, the company
appears to have established an internal program of preventing cell
phone use throughout its worksite, strategically deploying a battery
of four signal jammers, with a fifth jammer in reserve. These unlawful
jammer operations posed a tangible public safety hazard by potentially
blocking authorized communications (including essential 9-1-1 calls
and law enforcement communications) and only ceased when federal
agents affirmatively intervened. We find these actions to be
particularly egregious warranting an upward adjustment of the base
14. Therefore, for the unlawful operation and unauthorized equipment
violations, we will start our calculation from the maximum forfeiture
authorized by statute, or $16,000 per violation,^ yielding a $128,000
forfeiture. For the companion interference violations, we start our
calculation with a forfeiture of $40,000 (which includes upward
adjustments of $3,000 per signal jammer to reflect the duration of the
misconduct). This would result in a total forfeiture of $168,000.^
While such a forfeiture would certainly reflect the gravity of the
violations, we also find it appropriate to consider Taylor Oilfield's
surrender of all five of the illegal devices to Commission agents. In
this regard, we are mindful of the benefits of voluntary
relinquishment when illegal devices are involved and will adjust the
proposed forfeiture to reflect this aspect of Taylor Oilfield's
conduct. We note that the Commission, in coordination with the U.S.
Department of Justice, can seize an illegal jamming device, and we
will continue to do so in appropriate cases.^ However, voluntary
relinquishment expedites the removal of these illegal devices from the
stream of commerce. It also immediately curtails the misconduct,
precluding further illegal operation and preventing any unlawful
advertising and sales in the secondary market. Given the particular
circumstances of this case, we therefore will reduce the proposed
forfeiture by 25 percent to provide appropriate incentives in this
regard.^ Consistent with the Forfeiture Policy Statement, Section 1.80
of the Rules, and the statutory factors, we therefore conclude that
Taylor Oilfield is apparently liable for a total forfeiture in the
amount of $126,000.
15. As noted in the Supply Room NAL,^ we have in the past issued citations
for importation violations in the first instance.^ However, we are not
required to do so.^ While we will not propose a separate forfeiture
for Taylor Oilfield's unlawful importation in this NAL, we caution
Taylor Oilfield and other potential violators that going forward, and
as circumstances warrant, we intend to impose substantial monetary
penalties on individuals or businesses who illegally import jammers
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
16. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Section 1.80 of the
Commission's rules, Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. is hereby
NOTIFIED of this APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE in the amount of
one hundred twenty six thousand dollars ($126,000) for violations of
Sections 301, 302(b), and 333 of the Act and Sections 2.803(g) and
15.1(c) of the Commission's rules.^
17. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 1.80 of the
Commission's rules, within thirty (30) calendar days after the release
date of this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order,
Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. SHALL PAY the full amount of the
proposed forfeiture or SHALL FILE a written statement seeking
reduction or cancellation of the proposed forfeiture.
18. Payment of the forfeiture must be made by check or similar instrument,
wire transfer, or credit card, and must include the NAL/Account number
and FRN referenced above. Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. will
also send electronic notification on the date said payment is made to
SCR-Response@fcc.gov. Regardless of the form of payment, a completed
FCC Form 159 (Remittance Advice) must be submitted.^ When completing
the FCC Form 159, enter the Account Number in block number 23A (call
sign/other ID) and enter the letters "FORF" in block number 24A
(payment type code). Below are additional instructions you should
follow based on the form of payment you select:
* Payment by check or money order must be made payable to the order of
the Federal Communications Commission. Such payments (along with the
completed Form 159) must be mailed to Federal Communications
Commission, P.O. Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000, or sent via
overnight mail to U.S. Bank - Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL,
1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63101.
* Payment by wire transfer must be made to ABA Number 021030004,
receiving bank TREAS/NYC, and Account Number 27000001. To complete the
wire transfer and ensure appropriate crediting of the wired funds, a
completed Form 159 must be faxed to U.S. Bank at (314) 418-4232 on the
same business day the wire transfer is initiated.
* Payment by credit card must be made by providing the required credit
card information on FCC Form 159 and signing and dating the Form 159
to authorize the credit card payment. The completed Form 159 must then
be mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box 979088, St.
Louis, MO 63197-9000, or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank -
Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St.
Louis, MO 63101.
19. Any request for full payment under an installment plan should be sent
to: Chief Financial Officer--Financial Operations, Federal
Communications Commission, 445 12th Street, S.W., Room 1-A625,
Washington, D.C. 20554.^ If you have questions regarding payment
procedures, please contact the Financial Operations Group Help Desk by
phone, 1-877-480-3201, or by e-mail, ARINQUIRIES@fcc.gov.
20. The written statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the
proposed forfeiture, if any, must include a detailed factual statement
supported by appropriate documentation and affidavits pursuant to
Sections 1.16 and 1.80(f)(3) of the Rules.^ Mail the written statement
to Federal Communications Commission, Enforcement Bureau, South
Central Region, New Orleans Office, 2424 Edenborn Avenue, Suite 460,
Metairie, LA 70001, and include the NAL/Acct. No. referenced in the
caption. Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. also shall e-mail the
written response to: SCR-Response@fcc.gov.
21. The Commission will not consider reducing or canceling a forfeiture in
response to a claim of inability to pay unless the petitioner submits:
(1) federal tax returns for the most recent three-year period; (2)
financial statements prepared according to generally accepted
accounting practices (GAAP); or (3) some other reliable and objective
documentation that accurately reflects the petitioner's current
financial status. Any claim of inability to pay must specifically
identify the basis for the claim by reference to the financial
22. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 403
of the Communications Act,^ Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing, Inc. SHALL
SUBMIT a sworn statement providing the information set forth in
paragraph 10 within thirty (30) calendar days after the release date
of this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order. The
statement must be mailed to the Federal Communications Commission,
Enforcement Bureau, South Central Region, New Orleans Office, 2424
Edenborn Avenue, Suite 460, Metairie, LA 70001. Taylor Oilfield
Manufacturing, Inc. shall also e-mail the written statement to
23. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Notice of Apparent Liability
for Forfeiture and Order shall be sent by both First Class Mail and
Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Taylor Oilfield
Manufacturing, Inc., 225 Burgess Drive, Broussard, LA 70518.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Marlene H. Dortch
^ Taylor Oilfield states that it is "a comprehensive facility specializing
in repair and manufacturing of down hole tools, custom fabrication,
stabilizer manufacturing, phosphate coating, and shot peening services
throughout the Gulf Coast region." It has locations in Broussard,
Louisiana and Houston, Texas. See
http://www.tayloroilfield.com/index.php/about-us (last visited Mar. 21,
^ 47 U.S.C. SS 301, 302a(b), 333.
^ 47 C.F.R. S 2.803(g), 15.1(c).
^ 47 U.S.C. S 302a(b); 47 C.F.R. SS 2.1203, 2.1204.
^ We adopt this NAL on the same day as a separate Notice of Apparent
Liability for Forfeiture finding The Supply Room, Inc. apparently liable
for its unlawful operation of multiple signal jammers. See The Supply
Room, Inc., Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order, FCC
13-47 (Apr. 9, 2013) (Supply Room NAL). The Supply Room NAL marked our
first forfeiture action in connection with jammer operation.
^ In very limited circumstances and consistent with applicable procurement
requirements, individuals and/or entities may market jamming devices to
the U.S. federal government for authorized, official use. See 47 U.S.C. S
302a(c); 47 C.F.R. S 2.807(d).
^ 47 U.S.C. SS 301, 302a, 333.
^ See Cell Jammers, GPS Jammers and Other Jamming Devices, FCC Enforcement
Advisory, 27 FCC Rcd 2309 (2012); Cell Jammers, GPS Jammers and Other
Jamming Devices, FCC Enforcement Advisory, 26 FCC Rcd 1327 (2011). These
advisories, along with frequently asked questions related to the jamming
prohibition, are available at http://www.fcc.gov/jammers. On October 15,
2012, the Enforcement Bureau also launched a dedicated jammer tip line -
1-855-55-NOJAM (or 1-855-556-6526) - to make it easier for the public to
report the use or sale of illegal cell phone, GPS or other signal jammers.
^ 47 U.S.C. SS 154(i), 154(j), 403.
^ The complaint was submitted to the FCC's dedicated "jammerinfo" e-mail
box, email@example.com. See Complaint (on file in
^ See File No. EB-FIELDSCR-12-00002428. The jammers were labeled model
number VZ110834, but had no markings of a manufacturer or make.
^ 47 U.S.C. S 301.
^ Id. S 333.
^ Id. S 302a(b) (emphasis added).
^ 47 C.F.R. SS 2.803, 2.1203, 2.1204, 15.201, 15.3(o); see also id. S
2.803(a)(1)(indicating that, with limited exception, "no person shall sell
or lease, or offer for sale or lease (including advertising for sale or
lease), or import, ship, or distribute for the purpose of selling or
leasing or offering for sale or lease, any radio frequency device.").
^ Id. S 2.803(g); see also id. S 2.803(e)(4)(defining "marketing" to
include the "sale or lease, or offering for sale or lease, including
advertising for sale or lease, or importation, shipment, or distribution
for the purpose of selling or leasing or offering for sale or lease.").
^ Id. S 2.1203.
^ Id. S 2.1204(a)(1) (describing the only circumstances under which radio
frequency devices are permitted to be imported). But see discussion in
para. 7 infra (emphasizing that the statutory exceptions in Section 302(c)
of the Act and in Section 2.1204(a)(5)-(6) of the Rules are the only
exemptions that apply to signal jamming devices).
^ Id. SS 15.1(c), 15.201(b).
^ An "intentional radiator" is a "device that intentionally generates and
emits radio frequency energy by radiation or induction." Id. S 15.3(o).
Under this definition, signal jamming devices are intentional radiators.
^ See, e.g., 47 C.F.R. SS 22.377, 24.51, 27.51, 90.203 (requiring
certification of transmitters that operate in the public mobile service,
personal communications service, miscellaneous wireless service, and
private land mobile radio services).
^ See Supply Room NAL, FCC 13-47, at 3, para. 7.
^ See supra notes 6, 18. Because Section 2.1204 of the Rules provides that
radio frequency devices may only be imported when one or more import
conditions is met, if the importation cannot meet any of the conditions,
such importation is prohibited under the rule.
^ As such, many cell jammers can block more than just cell phone calls;
these devices can disrupt radio communications on any device that operates
on frequencies within or adjacent to its range. Some jamming devices are
designed to jam not only cellular signals, but also Global Positioning
System (GPS) signals. These combination devices can disable GPS tracking
capability and prevent a GPS device from receiving correct positioning
signals, or worse, prevent a first responder from locating a person in
need during an emergency.
^ Section 503(b) of the Act provides that any person who willfully or
repeatedly fails to comply substantially with the terms and conditions of
any license, or willfully or repeatedly fails to comply with any of the
provisions of the Act or any rule, regulation or order issued by the
Commission thereunder shall be liable for a forfeiture penalty. 47 U.S.C.
S 503(b). Section 312(f)(1) of the Act defines "willful" as the "conscious
and deliberate commission or omission of [any] act, irrespective of any
intent to violate" the law, and defines the term "repeated" as the
"commission or omission of such act more than once or for more than one
day." 47 U.S.C. S 312(f)(1). The legislative history to Section 312(f)(1)
of the Act clarifies that the definitions of "willful" and "repeated"
apply to both Sections 312 and 503(b) of the Act, and the Commission has
so interpreted the terms in the Section 503(b) context. See H.R. Rep. No.
97-765, 97^th Cong. 2d Sess. 51 (1982) ("This provision [inserted in
Section 312] defines the terms `willful' and `repeated' for purposes of
section 312, and for any other relevant section of the act (e.g., Section
503) . . . . As defined[,] . . . `willful' means that the licensee knew
that he was doing the act in question, regardless of whether there was an
intent to violate the law. `Repeated' means more than once, or where the
act is continuous, for more than one day. Whether an act is considered to
be `continuous' would depend upon the circumstances in each case. The
definitions are intended primarily to clarify the language in Sections 312
and 503, and are consistent with the Commission's application of those
terms . . . ."); see, e.g., Southern California Broadcasting Co.,
Memorandum Opinion and Order, 6 FCC Rcd 4387, 4388 (1991), recons. denied,
7 FCC Rcd 3454 (1992).
^ See 47 U.S.C. S 302a(b); 47 C.F.R. SS 2.1203, 2.1204; see also para. 7
^ See Cell Jammers, GPS Jammers and Other Jamming Devices, FCC Enforcement
Advisory, 27 FCC Rcd 2309 (Enf. Bur. 2012); Cell Jammers, GPS Jammers and
Other Jamming Devices, FCC Enforcement Advisory, 26 FCC Rcd 1327 (Enf.
Bur. 2011), available at http://www.fcc.gov/jammers. According to the
Department of Homeland Security, United States Customs and Border
Protection, "[w]hen goods move from any foreign country to the United
States, they are being IMPORTED. . . . When you buy goods from foreign
sources, you become the importer. And it is the importer - in this
case, YOU - who is responsible for assuring that the goods comply with a
variety of both state and federal government import regulations. . . . It
does not matter whether you bought the item from an established business
or from an individual selling items in an on-line auction." Internet
Purchases, Your Responsibilities and Liabilities,
visited March 5, 2013) (emphasis in original); see generally 19 U.S.C. S
^ 47 U.S.C. SS 154(i), 154(j), 403.
^ 47 C.F.R. S 1.16.
^ 47 U.S.C. S 503(b).
^ The Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section
1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines, Report and
Order, 12 FCC Rcd 17087 (1997) (Forfeiture Policy Statement), recons.
denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303 (1999); 47 C.F.R. S 1.80.
^ See 47 C.F.R. S 1.80(b)(8), Note ("The Commission and its staff retain
the discretion to issue a higher or lower forfeiture than provided in the
guidelines, to issue no forfeiture at all, or to apply alternative or
additional sanctions as permitted by the statute . . . .").
^ See 47 U.S.C. S 503; 47 C.F.R. S 1.80(b)(7). These amounts are subject
to further adjustment for inflation and the forfeiture amount applicable
to any violation will be determined based on the statutory amount
designated at the time of the violation. See 47 C.F.R. S 1.80(b)(9).
^ See, e.g., James Christopher Garcia, Citation and Order, 27 FCC Rcd
12173, 12177, para. 15 (Enf. Bur. 2012) ("[W]e caution you and other
potential violators that going forward, and as circumstances warrant, we
intend to impose substantial monetary penalties, rather than (or in
addition to) warnings, on individuals who operate a jammer.").
^ See, e.g., Hannspree North America, Inc., Memorandum Opinion and Order,
27 FCC Rcd 7968 (Enf. Bur. 2012) (upholding imposition of a per-unit
formula for calculation of the forfeiture); Argos Net, Inc., Notice of
Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order, 27 FCC Rcd 2786 (Enf. Bur.
2012) (proposing per transmitter forfeiture for violation of Section 301);
Syntax-Brillian Corporation, Forfeiture Order and Notice of Apparent
Liability for Forfeiture, 23 FCC Rcd 6323 (2008) (upholding imposition of
a per-unit formula for calculation of the forfeiture).
^ See Supply Room NAL, FCC 13-47, at 5-6, para. 12. Since we are issuing
this NAL on the same day as the Supply Room NAL, we will adhere to the
same forfeiture approach.
^ The twelve separate violations comprise four unlawful operation
violations, four violations involving use of illegal equipment, and four
violations of interference to authorized communications. See 47 U.S.C. S
301; 47 U.S.C. S 302a(b); 47 C.F.R. SS 2.803(g), 15.1(c); 47 U.S.C. S 333.
See also Directlink, LLC, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and
Order, 28 FCC Rcd 37 (Enf. Bur. 2013) (finding operator apparently
violated Sections 301 and 302(b) by operating a certified transmitter on a
frequency for which it was not authorized and without required dynamic
frequency selection (DFS) functionality). Accord Skybeam Acquisition
Corporation, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order, 27 FCC
Rcd 11337 (Enf. Bur. 2012) (finding use of certified equipment on
unauthorized frequency and without required DFS functionality apparently
violated Sections 301 and 302(b)); VPNet, Inc., Notice of Apparent
Liability for Forfeiture and Order, 27 FCC Rcd 2879 (Enf. Bur. 2012)
(concluding operation of certified transmitter with unauthorized antenna
connector and high-gain antenna apparently violated Sections 301 and
302(b)). Cf Scottsdale Lexus, Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture,
26 FCC Rcd 639 (Enf. Bur. 2011) (finding only Section 301 violation where
the operator used certified radios on unauthorized frequencies).
^ 47 U.S.C. S 503(b)(2)(E).
^ 47 C.F.R. S 1.80(b)(7).
^ We note that a $168,000 forfeiture is substantially lower than the
amount that would result from a straightforward application of the
statutory maxima permitted under a continuing violation theory, which
would yield a forfeiture in excess of $1.3 million. See supra para. 11.
Because we adopt this NAL on the same day as the Supply Room NAL, we apply
the same forfeiture framework. See Supply Room NAL, FCC 13-47, at 6, para.
12 ("[W]e may pursue alternative or more aggressive sanctions, should the
approach set forth in this NAL prove ineffective in deterring the unlawful
operation of jamming devices."); id. at 7 n.35 ("[W]e will continue to
evaluate the success of this approach and make any necessary changes in
our forfeiture framework to promote greater compliance.").
^ See 47 U.S.C. S 510.
^ Going forward, the amount of any reduction for voluntary relinquishment
will be based on our assessment of the facts and circumstances in a
^ Supply Room NAL, FCC 13-47, at 7, para. 15.
^ See, e.g, Matthew J. Wolf, Citation, 25 FCC Rcd 37 (Enf. Bur. 2010)
(issued Citation for illegal marketing and importation of radio frequency
devices); The Spy Store, Inc., 24 FCC Rcd 10047 (Enf. Bur. 2009); Robert
OHarvey, Citation, 24 FCC Rcd 10047 (Enf. Bur. 2009); Mark Cleveland,
Citation, 24 FCC Rcd 9416 (Enf. Bur. 2009).
^ 47 U.S.C. S 503(b)(5) (citation not required where "person involved is
engaging in activities for which a license, permit, certificate, or other
authorization is required. "). See also 47 C.F.R. S2.909(b) (stating that
importers of radio frequency devices are responsible for ensuring that the
devices they import comply with the Commission's equipment authorization
rules). The Commission has previously held that certain parties who engage
in activities for which an authorization is required may be subject to a
forfeiture without a prior citation. See also Syntax-Brillian Corporation,
Forfeiture Order and Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, 23 FCC
Rcd 6323 (2008) (noting that equipment certification is a "license,
permit, certificate, or other authorization" for purposes of the exception
to the citation requirement in Section 503(b)(5) of the Communications
^ 47 U.S.C. SS 301, 302a(b), 333, 503(b); 47 C.F.R. SS 1.80, 2.803(g),
^ An FCC Form 159 and detailed instructions for completing the form may be
obtained at http://www.fcc.gov/Forms/Form159/159.pdf.
^ See 47 C.F.R. S 1.1914.
^ 47 C.F.R. SS 1.16, 1.80(f)(3).
^ 47 U.S.C. SS 154(i), 154(j), 403.
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Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-46
Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-46