As part of its continuing crackdown on pirate radio operators, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has proposed a monetary forfeiture of $25,000 against an Astoria, New York man who, despite investigations and repeated warnings by the FCC, reportedly operated an unlicensed radio station.
According to a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture issued in August 2016, Daniel Delise had been the subject of numerous complaints for conducting unlicensed radio operations dating as far back as 2012, and had received at least two separate written warnings from the Commission’s Enforcement Bureau. Despite these warnings, the violations continued through 2015 and into 2016, ultimately resulting in a visit from FCC field agents in early April 2016.
During that visit, agents verbally warned Delise that his actions were illegal, and the warning was followed by issuance by the FCC of a Notice of Unlicensed Operation against Delise. Nonetheless, Delise apparently continued his broadcasts, including sending false warnings of an “officer in need” over the radio transmission system of the New York City Police Department in mid-April. As a result, the NYPD obtained a warrant for Delise’s apartment and confiscated all of the radio transmitting equipment from the premises.
The Communications Act of 1934 makes it unlawful to operate radio broadcasting equipment outside of prescribed limits without a license from the FCC, and authorizes the Commission to seize and forfeit any equipment used for such purposes.