Wednesday, February 13, 2013

West Palm Beach, Florida, USA: Man sued after pirate radio broadcast interferes with airport tower

A West Palm Beach man whose home-based pirate radio station interfered with air traffic control tower transmissions at Palm Beach International Airport is being sued by the federal government.

Federal prosecutors filed a summons against Robens Cheriza in federal court Tuesday, instructing him to respond within 21 days to a lawsuit demanding that he pay the $20,000 fine issued against him by federal broadcast regulators last year.

According to the lawsuit, filed Jan. 9, Cheriza has ignored the Federal Communications Commission's order to pay the fine — called a forfeiture order in FCC documents — since last April.

Cheriza violated federal broadcasting laws by "willfully and repeatedly" transmitting a radio signal without a license in the spring of 2011, according to the lawsuit. The summons was filed Tuesday.

According to FCC records, the sounds of a party being broadcast from Cheriza's home interrupted the control tower frequency at Palm Beach International Airport on April 1, 2011.

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