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

In the Matter of                )
Homere Hyppolite                )    File No. EB-02-TP-276
4843 Devon Circle               )    NAL/Acct. No. 200232700017
Naples, Florida 34112           )    FRN 0007-3085-13

                        FORFEITURE ORDER 

Adopted:  March 24, 2003                Released:  March 26, 2003

By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:

                        I.  INTRODUCTION

1.        In  this  Forfeiture  Order  (``Order''),  we  issue  a 
  monetary  forfeiture in  the  amount of  two  thousand  dollars 
  ($2,000) to Homere  Hyppolite for willful violation of  Section 
  301 of the  Communications Act of 1934, as amended  (``Act'').1  
  The noted  violation involves  Mr. Hyppolite's  operation of  a 
  radio station on 99.7 MHz without Commission authorization.

2.        On July 15, 2002, the Commission's Tampa, Florida Field 
  Office  (``Tampa   Office'')  issued  a   Notice  of   Apparent 
  Liability  for Forfeiture  (``NAL'')  to Mr.  Hyppolite  for  a 
  forfeiture in  the amount of  ten thousand dollars  ($10,000).2  
  Mr. Hyppolite filed a response to the NAL on August 16, 2002.

                         II.  BACKGROUND

3.        On  May  14,  2002,   agents  from  the  Tampa   Office 
  investigated  a complaint  alleging  that an  unlicensed  radio 
  station was transmitting  on frequency 99.7 MHz in the  Naples, 
  Florida  area.  A  search  of Commission  records  showed  that 
  there was no FM  radio station licensed on 99.7 MHz in  Naples, 
  Florida.  Using a mobile direction finding vehicle, the  agents 
  detected  an FM  radio station  transmitting  on 99.7  MHz  and 
  identified the  source of the transmissions  to be a  residence 
  located  at 4843  Devon Circle,  Naples, Florida.   The  agents 
  observed  an antenna mounted  on a  pole in a  tree behind  the 
  residence.  The agents took field strength measurements of  the 
  station's signal  and determined  that the  station required  a 
  license to operate.3  

4.        Immediately  after  locating  the  radio  station,  the 
  agents interviewed the occupant of the residence at 4843  Devon 
  Circle.   The  occupant,  who  identified  himself  as   Homere 
  Hyppolite, admitted that  he had been operating the  unlicensed 
  station prior  to the interview.  At  the agents' request,  Mr. 
  Hyppolite  turned  off   the  transmitter.   The  agents   hand 
  delivered to Mr.  Hyppolite a warning letter which advised  him 
  that operation  of a radio station  without a license  violates 
  Section  301 of  the  Act, warned  him  that operation  of  the 
  unlicensed  station  must cease  immediately,  and  listed  the 
  penalties for unauthorized operation of a radio station.

5.        On July 15, 2002, the Tampa Office issued an NAL for  a 
  $10,000 forfeiture  to Homere Hyppolite  for operating a  radio 
  station on May 14, 2002 without a license in willful  violation 
  of Section  301 of the Act.   In his response  to the NAL,  Mr. 
  Hyppolite  seeks  cancellation or  reduction  of  the  proposed 
  forfeiture.  According  to Mr. Hyppolite,  he was just  testing 
  the  radio equipment  and never  intended  to operate  a  radio 
  station from  his residence.  Mr.  Hyppolite also asserts  that 
  he  immediately ceased  operating the  radio equipment  at  the 
  request  of the  FCC agents.   Finally, Mr.  Hyppolite  asserts 
  that he  is unable to pay  the proposed $10,000 forfeiture  and 
  provides financial  information in support  of his request  for 
  reduction of the proposed forfeiture to $2,000.

                      III.      DISCUSSION

6.        The forfeiture  amount in  this  case was  assessed  in 
  accordance with  Section 503(b)  of the Act,4  Section 1.80  of 
  the  Commission's  Rules  (``Rules''),5  and  The  Commission's 
  Forfeiture Policy  Statement and Amendment  of Section 1.80  of 
  the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines, 12 FCC  Rcd 
  17087 (1997),  recon. denied, 15 FCC  Rcd 303 (1999)  (``Policy 
  Statement'').  In  examining Mr. Hyppolite's response,  Section 
  503(b)  of the  Act  requires  that the  Commission  take  into 
  account 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 other such matters as justice may require.6

7.        Section  301  of  the  Act  prohibits  radio  operation 
  ``except  under and  in accordance  with this  Act and  with  a 
  license in  that behalf  granted under the  provisions of  this 
  Act.''7  Mr. Hyppolite does not dispute that he operated  radio 
  transmitting equipment  on 99.7  MHz without a  license on  May 
  14, 2002.  Mr. Hyppolite  asserts that he was only testing  the 
  equipment and never intended to operate a radio station at  his 
  residence.  However,  when the  FCC agents  interviewed him  on 
  May 14,  2002, he told them that  he was operating the  station 
  as  a service  for the  community.   In any  event, it  is  not 
  necessary  to find  that a  rule violation  was intentional  or 
  that the  violator was aware  that he or  she was committing  a 
  rule  violation to  find  a ``willful''  violation  within  the 
  meaning  of Section  503(b)  of  the Act.8   Rather,  the  term 
  ``willful'' simply requires  that the violator knew that he  or 
  she  was taking  the action  in question,  irrespective of  any 
  intent  to violate  the Commission's  rules.9  Accordingly,  we 
  conclude that Mr.  Hyppolite willfully violated Section 301  of 
  the Act.

8.         Although  Mr. Hyppolite  asserts that  he  immediately 
  ceased operation of the  radio equipment at the request of  the 
  FCC agents, the Commission has repeatedly stated that  remedial 
  efforts  to correct  a  violation are  not  mitigating  factors 
  warranting reduction  of a forfeiture.10   Nevertheless,  after 
  considering   the  financial   information  provided   by   Mr. 
  Hyppolite  in support  of  his  claimed inability  to  pay  the 
  proposed $10,000 forfeiture, we conclude that reduction of  the 
  forfeiture to $2,000 is appropriate.   

9.        We have examined  Mr. Hyppolite's response  to the  NAL 
  pursuant to  the statutory  factors above,  and in  conjunction 
  with the Policy Statement as well.  As a result of our  review, 
  we conclude that  Mr. Hyppolite willfully violated Section  301 
  of the  Act, but we  reduce the forfeiture  for this  violation 
  from $10,000 to $2,000.

                      IV.  ORDERING CLAUSES

10.       Accordingly, IT IS  ORDERED that,  pursuant to  Section 
  503 of  the Act, and  Sections 0.111, 0.311  and 1.80(f)(4)  of 
  the  Rules,11  Homere  Hyppolite  IS  LIABLE  FOR  A   MONETARY 
  FORFEITURE in the  amount of two thousand dollars ($2,000)  for 
  willful violation of Section 301 of the Act.

11.       Payment of the forfeiture shall  be made in the  manner 
  provided for  in Section 1.80  of the Rules  within 30 days  of 
  the  release of  this Order.   If the  forfeiture is  not  paid 
  within the  period specified, the case  may be referred to  the 
  Department  of  Justice  for  collection  pursuant  to  Section 
  504(a) of  the Act.12  Payment may be  made by mailing a  check 
  or  similar instrument,  payable to  the order  of the  Federal 
  Communications  Commission,   to  the  Federal   Communications 
  Commission, P.O. Box 73482, Chicago, Illinois 60673-7482.   The 
  payment  should reference  NAL/Acct. No.  200232700017 and  FRN 
  0007-3085-13.  Requests for  full payment under an  installment 
  plan  should  be  sent  to:   Chief,  Revenue  and  Receivables 
  Operations  Group,  445 12th  Street,  S.W.,  Washington,  D.C. 
12.       IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that  a copy of this Order  shall 
  be sent by first  class mail and certified mail return  receipt 
  requested  to  Homere Hyppolite,  4843  Devon  Circle,  Naples, 
  Florida 34112.


                         David H. Solomon
                         Chief, Enforcement Bureau

  1 47 U.S.C.  301.  

  2 Notice  of Apparent Liability  for Forfeiture, NAL/Acct.  No. 
200232700017 (Enf. Bur., Tampa Office, released July 15, 2002).  

  3 Under Section 15.239  of the Commission's Rules, 47 C.F.R.   
15.239, non-licensed  broadcasting  in  the 88-108  MHz  band  is 
permitted only if  the field strength  of the transmissions  does 
not exceed 250  V/m at three  meters.  The agents'  measurements 
indicated that the station's field strength extrapolated to three 
meters was 1,737,906 V/m.  Thus,  the station operating on  99.7 
MHz exceeded the permissible  level for a non-licensed  low-power 
radio transmitter by 6,952 times.

  4 47 U.S.C.  503(b).

  5 47 C.F.R.  1.80.

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

  7 47 U.S.C.  301.

  8 Section  312(f)(1) of the Act,  47 U.S.C.  312(f)(1),  which 
applies to violations  for which forfeitures  are assessed  under 
Section 503(b) of the Act, provides that ``[t]he term  `willful,' 
... means the conscious and deliberate commission or omission  of 
such act, irrespective of any intent to violate any provision  of 
this Act or any rule  or regulation of the Commission  authorized 
by this Act ....''  See  Southern California Broadcasting Co.,  6 
FCC Rcd 4387 (1991).

  9  Id.  

  10 See  e.g., AT&T Wireless Services,  Inc., 17 FCC Rcd  21866, 
21871 (2002);  Seawest  Yacht Brokers,  9  FCC Rcd  6099  (1994); 
Station KGVL, Inc., 42 FCC 2d 258, 259 (1973).

  11 47 C.F.R.  0.111, 0.311, 1.80(f)(4).

  12 47 U.S.C.  504(a).

  13 See 47 C.F.R.  1.1914.