FCC agents traced an unauthorized 96.5 MHz FM signal in the Bronx portion of New York City back in 2008, and their subsequent investigation led them to Alexander Kissi. He was hit with an NAL for the standard $10K, which evolved into a forfeiture order, and which is now being upheld following an unsuccessful petition to have the fine dismissed.
FCC agents monitored and sourced the 96.5 transmissions 2/28/08 and 3/1/08, and spoke to an individual at the site of the transmission who noted Kissi’s ownership of the station, and also his absence at the moment.
Kissi was reached by phone a few days later and admitted he was responsible for the station.
He was hit with the NAL on 6/18/08, and did not challenge it. However, he did attempt to get out of the fine once it graduated to a forfeiture order.
In his petition, he denied responsibility for broadcasts on the frequency, saying he was out of town at the time the unauthorized broadcast was detected by agents. The FCC went on, “More specifically, he alleges that a construction worker stole his radio transmission equipment for the purpose of selling it and that when the construction worker was doing equipment tests, he mistakenly left the equipment running for several days.”
The FCC notes that in Kissi’s claim to be out of town, made in November 2008, he said the time period he was away was four months prior, for a duration of three weeks. The FCC noted that would put him out of town in July, many months after the incident of piracy occurred.
The FCC said that even if true, this was an argument that Kissi should have made at the beginning of the investigation – instead, he admitted his own responsibility.
The FCC also noted he has a prior on his record, having been caught operating a pirate station on 87.9 MHz, from the same Bronx address, back in 2002.
The $10K fine stands