From the ARRL... NEWINGTON, CT, Mar 30, 2001--The FCC has proposed levying a $17,000 fine on an East Palo Alto, California, man for transmitting without a license on amateur frequencies and for transmitting a false distress signal. The FCC issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture March 19 in the case of Joshie Yasin Nakamura Sr, who also is known as "Mervyn Ehambrave" and sometimes as "Marvin E. Barnes." As Ehambrave, Nakamura was among those receiving an FCC Warning Notice in March 1999 for allegedly operating without a license on the K7IJ repeater system in the San Francisco Bay area. At the time, the FCC shut down the repeater system for more than two months, saying that the repeater's owner and control operator did not have proper control of the system and that the control operator was permitting unlicensed individuals to transmit via the machines. The huge fine the FCC is proposing stems from complaints about Nakamura to the FCC dating back to late January through March of last year. The Commission says it heard from several Amateur Radio licensees and from members of the ARRL Amateur Auxiliary asserting that an unlicensed station was operating on several amateur frequencies without a license. Reports alleged that the operator was "causing interference by jamming and playing music," the FCC said in its NAL. In March 2000, agents from the FCC's San Francisco Field Office observed unidentified radio transmissions on 445.175 MHz and the international "SOS" distress signal being transmitted in Morse code. The agents tracked the signal to Nakamura's residence in East Palo Alto. During an inspection, agents found Nakamura was "operating the station without authorization from the Commission and Mr. Nakamura was not in distress," the FCC said. He was issued a Notice of Unlicensed Radio Operation at that time, the FCC said. The FCC said it continued to get complaints last summer from Amateur Radio operators, including an ARRL Official Observer, about an unlicensed station on several amateur frequencies, including 146.63 MHz, allegedly causing interference and playing music. Last September, FCC agents observed transmissions on the 2-meter frequency and again tracked them to Nakamura's residence. Another inspection revealed that Nakamura was operating without authorization. He again was presented with a Notice of Unlicensed Radio Operation, the FCC said. The FCC determined that its guidelines call for a $10,000 fine for unlicensed operation and another $7000 forfeiture for causing malicious interference. The FCC gave Nakamura 30 days to pay up or to seek reduction or cancellation of the proposed fine. The K7IJ repeater case also involved assistance from the Amateur Auxiliary. The FCC permitted the K7IJ repeater system to resume operation in May 1999 after FCC Special Counsel for Amateur Radio Enforcement Riley Hollingsworth struck an agreement with the owner and the control operator that involved close monitoring by the FCC and strict adherence to FCC rules and regulations.