California pirate pays extra for not answering door


Broadcasting PirateAn amateur radio licensee who should have known better was nailed for running an unauthorized FM station northwest of San Francisco-Oakland. The buccaneer only made things worse by failing to let agents inspect the station.

Brian R. Ragan was operating on 104.9 MHz without a license in Suisun City CA. And since he is the licensee of Amateur Radio Station KF6EGI, the FCC said he should have been aware of the requirement to make his equipment available for FCC inspection on request.

That’s why the FCC came down a little extra hard on Ragan. On 2/25/12, they traced the 104.9 broadcast to his garage and heard the station operating there. But nobody answered. They left a notice of unlicensed operation.

Ragan contacted the office a couple of days later, and admitted he didn’t answer the door because he was afraid to confront the agents.

Ragan was nailed with the standard $10K fine for unauthorized operation, and a $7K fine for refusing an FCC inspection, for a total liability of $17K. Additionally, he is required to attest in writing on penalty of perjury that he is in full compliance with all licensee requirements and will never turn down an inspection request again.