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Monday, May 31, 2010

More hams in trouble with authorities

It seems that ham operators' run-ins with the law must come in waves, as yet ANOTHER ham is in trouble with police.

Although not as severe as Irene Levy (KJ6CEY) acted in California, this one is just as much a black eye on ham radio as her case is.

Authorities say that Keith Mutch (KB1RBI, pictured right) of Norwich, CT used a ham radio to report over the nearby Wal-Mart radio frequency that a man with a gun was outside the store threatening to shoot people, sending police into action.

Although there are no specific details, authorities were somehow able to determine that Mutch was responsible after Wal-mart employees advised none of their employees made the transmission.

Besides making a false report, he was also charged with reckless endangerment and breach of peace. He's currently held on $5000 bond awaiting a hearing on Tuesday, June 1.

And on the other side of the world in New Zealand, the Radio Spectrum Management agency (New Zealand's equivalent to the FCC) has charged Alan Potter, ZL3II (pictured, left) with running a station on 3100 watts of power, well over the 500W limit his license class was authorized for.

RSM was alerted after Potter posted a YouTube video of himself running his station at 3100 watts. The video has since been removed.

In addition to fines and court costs, Potter has to also forfeit his radio equipment.

Yet again another example that, if you're going to break the law, don't post the video to YouTube to show off!!!

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