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FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:

from The FCC on June 11, 2004
View comments about this article!

Before the Federal Communications Commission Washington, D.C. 20554

In the Matter of ) ) File No. EB-03-DT-120 Paladen Communications, Inc. ) a/k/a CB Shop ) NAL/Acct. No. 200432360003 ) North Jackson, Ohio ) FRN: 0010 6809 40 )


Released: May 27, 2004

By the District Director, Detroit Office, Northeast Region, Enforcement Bureau:

I. INTRODUCTION 1. In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture ("NAL"), we find that Paladen Communications, Inc. a/k/a CB Shop (``Paladen''), has apparently violated Section 302(b) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended1 (``the Act''), and Sections 2.815(b) and 2.815(c) of the Commission's Rules (``Rules'')2 by offering for sale Citizens Band (``CB'') external radio frequency power amplifiers (``linears''). We conclude that Paladen is apparently liable for a forfeiture in the amount of seven thousand dollars ($7,000).


2. On July 24, 2003, agents from the Detroit Office visited Paladen at 12274 Mahoning Avenue, Suite 14, North Jackson, Ohio. During this visit, the agents observed a Palomar Deluxe Modulator DX-55V CB linear on sale for $250. The agents informed Arthur Dundorf and Preston Dundorf of Paladen, that CB linears could not be legally sold. As a result of their findings, the Detroit Office issued them a Citation on October 31, 2003. The Citation informed Paladen of the violations and penalties that could be imposed for selling linears. The Detroit Office received a reply from Paladen, signed by Preston L. Dundorf, proprietor. He wrote that they were unaware that they were violating marketing rules and that they would not violate the rules in the future.

3. On January 9, 2004, the Detroit Office received a complaint that Paladen was continuing to violate the Commission's marketing rules by selling CB linear amplifiers. As a result of this new report, an agent traveled to North Jackson, Ohio to determine if Paladen was continuing to sell CB linears. On February 24, 2004, a sales person for Paladen offered to sell the agent a Palomar 100 watt linear amplifier for $124.00.

III. DISCUSSION 4. Section 302 of the Act authorizes the Commission to regulate equipment capable of emitting radio frequency energy that may cause interference to radio communications. The Act further states that ``[n]o person shall manufacture, import, sell, offer for sale, or ship devices or home electronic equipment and systems, or use devices, which fail to comply with regulations promulgated pursuant to this section. Section 2.815(b) of the Rules states that `` person shall manufacture, sell or lease, offer for sale or lease (including advertising for sale or lease), or import, ship, or distribute for the purpose of selling or leasing or offering for sale or lease, any external radio frequency power amplifier or amplifier kit capable of operation on any frequency or frequencies between 24 and 35 MHZ.''3 Section 2.815(c) of the rules states ``No person shall manufacture, sell or lease (including advertising for sale or lease) or import, ship or distribute for the purpose of selling or leasing or offering for sale or lease, any external radio frequency power amplifier or amplifier kit capable of operation on any frequency or frequencies below 144 MHz unless the amplifier has received a grant of type acceptance...'' Paladen was repeatedly warned, verbally and in writing, about the penalties for selling CB linear amplifiers, yet, they continued to sell them in violation of Section 302 of the Act4 and Sections 2.815(b) and 2.815(c) of the Rules.

5. Based on the evidence before us, we find that Paladen willfully5 and repeatedly6 violated Section 302 of the Act and Sections 2.815(b) and 2.815(c) of the Rules by offering for sale CB linear amplifiers on February 24, 2004. The Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section 1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate the Forfeiture Guidelines, 12 FCC Rcd 17087, 17113 (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC Rcd 303(1999) (``Forfeiture Policy Statement'')7, sets the base forfeiture amount for importation or marketing of unauthorized equipment at seven thousand dollars ($7,000). In assessing the monetary forfeiture amount, we must take into account the statutory factors set forth in Section 503(b)(2)(D) of the Act.8 These factors include the nature, circumstances, extent, and gravity of the violation, and with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability to pay, and other such matters as justice may require. Applying the Forfeiture Policy Statement, statutory factors and the inflation adjustments to the base amount of Paladen's violation of $7,000 for marketing unauthorized equipment, we find no compelling evidence to support any adjustments to the base forfeiture amount. Thus, we believe that a forfeiture amount of seven thousand dollars ($7,000) is warranted.


6. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section 503(b)9 of the Act and Sections 0.111, 0.311 and 1.80 of the Rules10, Paladen Communications a/k/a CB Shop, is hereby NOTIFIED of this APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE in the amount of seven thousand dollars ($7,000) for willful and repeated violation of Section 302(b) of the Act and Sections 2.815(b) and 2,815(c) of the Rules.

7. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT, pursuant to Section 1.80 of the Rules, within thirty (30) days of the release date of this NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY, Paladen, SHALL PAY the full amount of the proposed forfeiture or SHALL FILE a written statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the proposed forfeiture.

8. Payment of the forfeiture may be made by mailing a check or similar instrument, payable to the order of the Federal Communications Commission, to the Forfeiture Collection Section, Finance Branch, Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box 73482, Chicago, Illinois 60673-7482. The payment should note the NAL/Acct. No. 200432360003, FRN: 0010 6809 40.

9. The response, if any, must be mailed to Federal Communications Commission, Detroit Office, 24897 Hathaway Street, Farmington Hills, MI 48335-1552, and MUST INCLUDE THE NAL/Acct. No. 200432360003.

10. The Commission will not consider reducing or canceling a forfeiture in response to a claim of inability to pay unless the petitioner submits: (1) federal tax returns for the most recent three-year period; (2) financial statements prepared according to generally accepted accounting practices (``GAAP''); or (3) some other reliable and objective documentation that accurately reflects the petitioner's current financial status. Any claim of inability to pay must specifically identify the basis for the claim by reference to the financial documentation submitted.

11. Requests for payment of the full amount of this Notice of Apparent Liability under an installment plan should be sent to: Chief, Revenue and Receivables Operations Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554.11

12. Under the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, Pub L. No. 107-198, 116 Stat. 729 (June 28, 2002), the FCC is engaged in a two-year tracking process regarding the size of entities involved in forfeitures. If you qualify as a small entity and if you wish to be treated as a small entity for tracking purposes, please so certify to us within thirty (30) days of this NAL, either in your response to the NAL or in a separate filing to be sent to the Federal Communications Commission, Enforcement Bureau, Spectrum Enforcement Division, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554. Your certification should indicate whether you, including your parent entity and its subsidiaries, meet one of the definitions set forth in the list provided by the FCC's Office of Communications Business Opportunities (OCBO) set forth in Attachment A of this Notice of Apparent Liability. This information will be used for tracking purposes only. Your response or failure to respond to this question will have no effect on your rights and responsibilities pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Communications Act. If you have questions regarding any of the information contained in Attachment A, please contact OCBO at (202) 418-0990.

13. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT this NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY shall be sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested, to Paladen Communications a/k/a CB Shop, 12274 Mahoning Avenue, Suite 14, North Jackson, Ohio 44451.


James A. Bridgewater District Director Detroit Office

Attachment A - FCC List of Small Entities, October 2002.

Member Comments:
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FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:  
by N6KEK on June 11, 2004 Mail this to a friend!
Please Paladin don't make us cry crocdile tears " We didn't know we we're violating rules and won't do it again"...

When you operate a business you better know what your limitations are in that regard. What if Paladin had dumped a highly dangerous carcinagen like PCB containing parts by the side of the raod because they didn't want to pay the cost of proper disposal and 100's of people came down with cancer. Would the just shrug their shoulders and say they same thing.

Paladin and all of the others selling these known illegal amps in this way is not legal and they just don't give a crap. Hurray for me and to hell with everbody else in their mantra.
RE: FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:  
by AB5XZ on June 11, 2004 Mail this to a friend!
There are still a few CB amplifiers for sale on eBay. I counted 5 of them last night - one was a non-working tube-type for parts.

The rules are a-changing, though.

It will still be illegal for a CBer to use an amplifier in the US, but it won't be illegal for a manufacturer to import a ham amplifier that goes to full output with 5 watts drive.
RE: FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:  
by WR8D on June 12, 2004 Mail this to a friend!
I'd love to hear what kind of lie copper comes up with when they knock on their door. Way to go FCC! Just keep the ball rolling!
John, WR8D
RE: FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:  
by KB3LFC on June 13, 2004 Mail this to a friend!
Not only are illegal CB amps a problem but so are radios that operate outside of authorized frequency limits. Many CB shops either sell radios that will operate (transmit) on unauthorized frequencies or will modifiy existing radios to do so.
Years ago I worked in a CB shop and recall several humorous indicents involving (very good hearted but misled)truckers who wanted to "talk ham." One poor fellow brought in a Yeasu HF rig and swore up and down that Yeasu Radios were "no good." I asked him why he thought so and he replied, "...they all keep blowing the #@&*! finals!"
As it turned out this chap bought an HF rig so he could "talk ham." Of course he didn't have an amateur license, but that didn't seenm to matter. I asked what kind of antenna he was using and he replied that he was using a "Penetrator." I tried to explain that his problem was not the radio but most likely an out of sight SWR.
"No sir," he shot back. Pointing to the SWR meter he said, "See that? I got it turned clear down to zero. So don't tell me its the SWRs."
Well...OK! :)
Tom Mitchell
RE: FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:  
by WR8D on June 13, 2004 Mail this to a friend!
Hi Hi Hi, you're killing me Tom. Just about the same exact thing has happened to me. From your wording i kind of figure you found out fast that you can't explain not one thing to any of them either. They already know it all.

Thanks for the laugh! 73
RE: FCC Issues $7,000 NAL for CB Amplifiers:  
by WY3X on June 17, 2004 Mail this to a friend!
I began my electronics hobby at a very young age, around 6 years old (1964). I graduated to shortwave eventually, and began listening worldwide. That sure was a lot of fun, and quite a novelty to someone who had only watched an old black and white TV or listened to "newfangled" FM radio! When I was about 14, I bought a Radio Shack Mini-23 CB and a gutter mount antenna. I had absolutely no concept of a tuned antenna! I raised someone who was a couple of blocks away who told me I needed a better antenna. I went out and bought a Radio Shack 3-element beam, and laid it carefully on the metal roof of the mobile home I was living in at the time. The guy then told me to put it up on a pole and it would work much better.... DUH! The next thing he told me was to put the mast in a bucket of water, and that would make it work even better! Naive young me- yes, I did it all! Eventually I found knowledgable help and was on the air "proper". I learned as much as I could by reading, and what I couldn't find printed information on, I sought help from people who seemed nice and had great signals. Eventually I studied electronics after high school and got a degree, and whaddaya know, now I'm one of those who helps others learn the material right the first time! (But I never make 'em jump through the hoops I had to!). Just hook the newbies onto a short leash and show them the right way to do things. Hopefully they'll come around...

I can just see that guy Tom mentioned "adjusting his SWR's down to zero"!!! <GRIN>

Last Field Day I worked 5 stations QRP/Solar power at 1-1/2 watts to get the QRP endorsement for my club. Best contact was Canada (from South Carolina). You don't need an amp to make fun contacts, just perseverance and a good antenna (I made the last contact just as everyone was folding up to leave the site!).

73 all,-KR4WM
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