Federal officials recently seized radio equipment from an illegal pirate radio station operating out of Roslindale on Washington Street.
A warrant recently unsealed in U.S. District Court details the May 21, 2013, seizure of radio transmission equipment, according to a press release from U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Carmen Ortiz.
The pirate radio station is alleged to have been using frequency 88.5 MHz without a license from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and a civil action was brought seeking the radio equipment to be handed over because it was allegedly used in violation of federal law.
According to Ortiz's office, after an affidavit was filed with the civil complaint, the FCC issued warnings to the residents of 4258 Washington St., but broadcasts continued. The action to hand over the equipment occurred after a licensed broadcaster reported interference occuring with its radio signal.
The Federal Communications Act of 1934 prohibits radio broadcasting equipment above certain low-intensity levels without a license issued by the FCC. The act allows for any electronic or radio frequency equipment used to broadcast without an FCC license to be seized or forfeited.
The number of available radio frequencies is limited, and unlicensed broadcasters can interfere with licensed radio stations, which occurred with the Roslindale pirate radio station.
“It is a potential hazard to public safety for pirate radio stations to broadcast illegally and interfere with critical radio communications,” said Ortiz via statement. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office will work in conjunction with the FCC to identify and seize equipment from these pirate broadcasters.”