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                           Before the
                Federal Communications Commission
                     Washington, D.C. 20554


In the Matter of                        )
                              )
US UNWIRED, INC.                   )   
Licensee of Paging Stations KNKLM672    )    
    And KNKP448                    )    File No. EB-00-TS-216
Various Locations in Louisiana                         )    

NAL/Acct. No. 200132100003

                                
           NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE

     Adopted: October 19, 2000                    Released: 
October 23, 2000

By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:

                        I.   Introduction

     1.  In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture,  we 
find that US Unwired, Inc. (US Unwired), operated paging  systems 
without  Commission  authorization,  in  apparent  violation   of 
Section 301  of the  Communications Act  of 1934  (``Act'')1,  as 
amended, and Section 22.3 of the Commission's Rules (``Rules'').2  
We conclude that US Unwired is apparently liable for a forfeiture 
in the amount of five thousand dollars ($5,000).  

                         II.  Background

     2.  US  Unwired's  authorization  for  Public  Mobile  Radio 
Stations KNLM672  and KNKP448,  expired on  April 1,  1999.    On 
October 25, 1999,  US Unwired filed  applications for renewal  of 
the authorizations for the stations  and requested the waiver  of 
Section 1.949  of the  Commissions  Rules.3 US  Unwired's  waiver 
request indicates  that  US Unwired  apparently  operated  paging 
facilities  without  authorization  between  April  1,  1999  and 
October 25, 1999.   On December  9, 1999, the Commission  granted 
US Unwired's  waiver  request  and reinstated  its  authority  to 
operate Stations KNLM672 and KNKP448. 

                         III. Discussion

     3.  Section 301 of  the Act sets  forth the general  mandate 

that no  person  shall  use  or operate  any  apparatus  for  the 

transmission of  energy or  communications  or signals  by  radio 

within the United States except under and in accordance with  the 

Act and with a license.  Section 22.3 of the Commission's Rules 
provides, in pertinent part, that  stations in the Public  Mobile 
Service must be operated  with a valid Commission  authorization.   
We conclude  that US  Unwired  operated paging  stations  without 
valid licenses between April  1, 1999, and  October 25, 1999,  in 
apparent willful and  repeated violation  of Section  301 of  the 
Communications Act and Section 22.3 of the Rules.

     5.  The Commission  has stated that  ``The Wireless  Bureau, 
after reviewing all  the facts and  circumstances concerning  the 
late filing of [a] renewal  application, may, in its  discretion, 
also initiate enforcement action against  the licensee for . .  . 
unauthorized operation.  . . .''  4  In addition, the  Commission 
stated that applications for renewal  received more than 30  days 
after expiration of  the license may  lead to ``more  significant 
fines or  forfeitures.''5   In  this case,  US  Unwired  operated 
without valid licenses and  filed renewal applications more  than 
180 days after the licenses expired.  

     6.  The guidelines contained in the Commission's  Forfeiture 
Policy Statement, 12 FCC Rcd 17087, 17113 (1997), recon.  denied, 
15 FCC  Rcd  303 (1999),  specify  a base  forfeiture  amount  of 
$10,000 for operation without an instrument of authorization  for 
the service.   Section  503(b)(2)(D)  of the  Act6  requires  the 
Commission to consider  ``the  nature, circumstances, extent  and 
gravity of the violation, and, with respect to the violator,  the 
degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability  to 
pay, and such other matters  as justice may require.''   In  this 
case, US  Unwired failed  to file  applications for  renewal  and 
operated paging stations whose licenses had expired for over  180 
days under  circumstances  where the  Commission  has  envisioned 
``more significant  fines  or  forfeitures''  for  violations  in 
excess of 30 days.  On the other hand, US Unwired had  previously 
been licensed, so this is  not comparable to ``pirate''  wireless 
operations, which typically have  been subject to forfeitures  of 
approximately $10,000.7   Taking these  facts into  consideration 
and all of the  factors required by  Section 503(b)(2)(D) of  the 
Act and  the  Forfeiture Policy  Statement,  we conclude  that  a 
forfeiture of $5,000 is warranted.

                      IV.  Ordering Clauses
  
     7.  Accordingly,  IT IS  ORDERED THAT,  pursuant to  Section 

503(b) of the  Act8 and  Sections 0.111,  0.311 and  1.80 of  the 

Rules9, US Unwired is hereby  NOTIFIED of its APPARENT  LIABILITY 

FOR A  FORFEITURE  in  the  amount of  $5,000  for  violation  of  

Section 301 of the  Communications Act of  1934, as amended,  and 

Section 22.3 of the Commission's Rules.  The amount specified was 

determined after  consideration  of  the  factors  set  forth  in 

Section 503(b)(2)(D) of  the Act, 47  U.S.C.  503(b)(2)(D),  and 

the guidelines enumerated in the Forfeiture Policy Statement.

     8.  IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section 1.80  of 

the Commission's Rules, within thirty days of the release of this 

NOTICE OF  APPARENT  LIABILITY, US  Unwired  SHALL PAY  the  full 

amount of  the  proposed  forfeiture  or  SHALL  FILE  a  written 

statement seeking  reduction  or  cancellation  of  the  proposed 

forfeiture.

     9.   Payment of the  forfeiture may be  made by credit  card 

through the  Commission's Credit  and Debt  Management Center  at 

(202) 418-1995  or  by mailing  a  check or  similar  instrument, 

payable to the order of the Federal Communications Commission, to 

the  Forfeiture  Collection  Section,  Finance  Branch,   Federal 

Communications Commission,  P.O.  Box  73482,  Chicago,  Illinois 

60673-7482.   The  payment   should  note   the  NAL/Acct.   No.: 

200132100003.

     10.   The  response  if  any  must  be  mailed  to   Federal 

Communications  Commission,  Enforcement  Bureau,  Technical  and 

Public Safety Division, 445  12th Street, S.W.  Washington,  D.C.  

20554, Ref: EB-00-TS-216; NAL/Acct. No. 200132100003.

     11.  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  documentation 
submitted.

     12.  Requests for payment of the full amount of this  Notice 
of Apparent Liability  under an installment  plan should be  sent 
to: Chief, Credit  and Debt Management  Center, 445 12th  Street, 
S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554.10

     13.   IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT this notice shall be  sent, 
by certified mail,  return receipt requested,  to counsel for  US 
Unwired, Inc., Lukas, Nace, Gutierrez & Sach, Attention David  A. 
LaFuria, 1111 Nineteenth Street,  NW, Suite 1200, Washington,  DC  
20036. 


                              FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION



                              David H. Solomon
                              Chief, Enforcement Bureau
  

 

_________________________

1  47 U.S.C.  301.

2 47 C.F.R.  22.3.

3 47 C.F.R.  1.949.  This Section provides , in pertinent  part, 
that ``Applications for renewal of authorizations in the Wireless 
Radio Services must be filed no later than the expiration date of 
the authorization for which renewal is 
sought. . . .'' 


4 The enforcement responsibilities of the Wireless 
Telecommunications Bureau are now with the Enforcement Bureau.  
See 47 C.F.R.  0.111.

5   Biennial Regulatory Review -- Amendment of Parts 0, 1, 13, 
22, 24, 26, 27, 80, 87, 90, 95, 97, and 101 of the Commission's 
Rules to Facilitate the Development and Use of the Universal 
Licensing System in the Wireless Telecommunications Services, 
Memorandum Opinion and Order upon reconsideration, 14 FCC Rcd 
11476, 11485-11486 (1999).

6 47 U.S.C. 503(b)(2)(D).

7 See, e.g., Colorado CallComm, Inc., 15 FCC Rcd 9397 (Enf. Bur. 
2000) and Jean R. Jonassaint, 15 FCC Rcd 10422 (Enf. Bur. 2000).

8 47 U.S.C.  503(b).

9 47 C.F.R.  0.111, 0.311, and 1.80.

10 See 47 C.F.R.  1.1914