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Administrative Law Judge dismisses W6WBJ's license renewal proceedings WITH PREJUDICE.


Road Squawker

Sr. Member
Jan 19, 2011
1,954
1,497
173
He is DUN... The FCC is really gonna get tough with him, if, and I say "if" he transmits with out a valid license.

Same with K3VR... he will be constantly followed and sooner or later, he will make a mistake.
HAHAHAHAHA
 

RF_Exorcist

Member
Jun 1, 2017
14
5
13
42
Boy was I wrong about this one... It's a few days shy of a year since Bill filed his appeal, and there has been no action on it whatsoever. I really hope he gets his day in court before he passes away, because, believe it or not, there are some real issues here that I believe should be addressed in how the FCC handles amateur enforcement.
 

Rick330man

WDX 404
Mar 16, 2013
624
808
103
Florida Keys
Thanks for posting the Order. I've reviewed it. As someone who has a wealth of experience in this stuff, I think that the ALJ got it wrong. He's relying on a 1970 precedent and failing to consider changes in the law since then.

Two legal concepts come to mind: (1) venue and (2) forum non conveniens. To keep it simple, courts usually frown on the idea of making a party incur costs and prosecute or defend a case somewhere far from home. The Atlantic Marine Construction Co. case and 28 U.S.C. 1404(a) come to mind. I don't want to bore everyone with legalese, but I think the gentleman had a valid point in demanding that his matter be heard closer to his home and not in Washington, D.C. He didn't ignore Orders. He responded timely and pointed out that he needed the matter heard near him. There's a big difference there.

Appeals lacking merit get tossed pretty quickly. From just the Order, I think this appeal has merit. I'm not saying he'll definitely win, but he's given them something to think about. The case should be bounced back with an Order that the gentleman be given a full trial on the merits of his case, and that it should be held close to where he lives,

We'll see.
 
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RF_Exorcist

Member
Jun 1, 2017
14
5
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42
Thanks for posting the Order. I've reviewed it. As someone who has a wealth of experience in this stuff, I think that the ALJ got it wrong. He's relying on a 1970 precedent and failing to consider changes in the law since then.

Two legal concepts come to mind: (1) venue and (2) forum non conveniens. To keep it simple, courts usually frown on the idea of making a party incur costs and prosecute or defend a case somewhere far from home. The Atlantic Marine Construction Co. case and 28 U.S.C. 1404(a) come to mind. I don't want to bore everyone with legalese, but I think the gentleman had a valid point in demanding that his matter be heard closer to his home and not in Washington, D.C. He didn't ignore Orders. He responded timely and pointed out that he needed the matter heard near him. There's a big difference there.

I agree with your synopsis. The problem is that because the Commission doesn't like how Billy has chosen to defend himself, they're taking a very hard line with him. It's not fair; in point of fact, it's egregiously unfair, but that's how We the People have allowed our Government to operate.

While this should have been remedied at the Administrative level, the tactic for US Government agencies is to give a person as hard of a time as they possibly can, hoping that the matter reaches the Appeals Court level. And while that Court works quite a bit differently, it can take years - as this case shows - before you actually get there, and who knows how much money you'll spend. Ideally, the DC Appeals Court will allow the matter to be heard before the US District Court for the Eastern District of CA - the one that's so over-burdened that it chose not to pursue the $25,000.00 forfeiture the FCC issued against him a few years ago.

Appeals lacking merit get tossed pretty quickly. From just the Order, I think this appeal has merit.

I think so as well, particularly because when you really dig deep into the matter, it's about little more than Billy hurting Riley Hollingsworth's feelings with his [mostly] legitimate criticisms. It's still not clear that the Commission had any near-field intercepts or any legitimate recordings that were actually made by Commission staff for use as evidence of a rule violation, and Bill responded to the Commission's inquiries regarding all the alleged violations that were cited as needing to be "cleared up" before his license renewal could go forward. Despite that, Hollingsworth pushed [I'm told he went to extreme lengths to ensure that the matter would go before an ALJ, despite Bill's responses] hard for the current situation to come about.

Things really went south when some of his documents, though filed timely, were treated as not being filed timely because they were sent somewhere for irradiation before actually reaching the Commission's offices and he consistently argued from that point forward that the Commission wasn't dealing fairly with him. They also argued at several points that he hadn't responded to things even though he had, and that he'd failed to cite a source or precedent when he had, and that really enraged him - as it should have, and as it would anyone else. It's really hard to fathom how much time and effort they've wasted on this matter considering amateur radio is a non-remunerative service, but apparently Riley's feelings were very important to... well, someone.

I'm not saying he'll definitely win, but he's given them something to think about.

I don't think he's going to win with the Commission, but I don't think he really ever expected to. I think he'd win at the Appeals Court level, provided it's limited to what went down pre-2007. The problem is that they're dragging their feet with it to such a great degree that you wonder if they're not hoping he dies before it can make it to court, because if it did some precedent might be established that really causes them problems down the road.
 

Rick330man

WDX 404
Mar 16, 2013
624
808
103
Florida Keys
Things really went south when some of his documents, though filed timely, were treated as not being filed timely because they were sent somewhere for irradiation before actually reaching the Commission's offices and he consistently argued from that point forward that the Commission wasn't dealing fairly with him. They also argued at several points that he hadn't responded to things even though he had, and that he'd failed to cite a source or precedent when he had, and that really enraged him - as it should have, and as it would anyone else. It's really hard to fathom how much time and effort they've wasted on this matter considering amateur radio is a non-remunerative service, but apparently Riley's feelings were very important to... well, someone.

That kind of non-sense calls for Rule 11 sanctions against the government.
 

Road Squawker

Sr. Member
Jan 19, 2011
1,954
1,497
173
I guess you guys miss his constant and ongoing QRMing of the WARFA nets


...edit... I think the gentleman had a valid point in demanding that his matter be heard closer to his home and not in Washington, D.C. He didn't ignore Orders. He responded timely and pointed out that he needed the matter heard near him. There's a big difference there....

I don't know where you are getting your info from, but, He NEVER established compliance with 1.221.(C), therefore he AGREED to travel to D.C., and then failed to do so.

https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/0710051601041/FCC-18M-05A1.pdf

Paragraph II A 8

The LAW clearly states, that as the applicant, (Crowell) had the obligation to prove he met the requirements of 1.221 (C).
By NOT attending the hearing, He failed to comply with the law.


Read

B. BAD FAITH 11. & 12.

The presiding Judge ordered Crowell to show why (His) abuse of the process should not be ruled.

He failed to produce that evidence too.

The judge had no other legal option and ruled against Crowell with PREJUDICE.


All the rest is just B.S. by Crowell
 

Rick330man

WDX 404
Mar 16, 2013
624
808
103
Florida Keys
I guess you guys miss his constant and ongoing QRMing of the WARFA nets

That is not the issue at this stage. If he did wrong, he should be held accountable for it. No one is disputing that. However, that ultimate determination is step 10 in the process. Here, we are at step 4 or 5. He has a right to procedural due process at every step before there is a final adjudication.




I don't know where you are getting your info from, but, He NEVER established compliance with 1.221.(C), therefore he AGREED to travel to D.C., and then failed to do so.

That kind of logic chain is called "bootstrapping." It is frowned upon - especially in administrative proceedings, where the judge has limited authority. Contrary to the point made, it is quite clear from this guy's submissions that he repeatedly did not agree to have his case heard in D.C. and requested that it be heard closer to home. An ALJ typically can't just ignore that.

https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/0710051601041/FCC-18M-05A1.pdf

Paragraph II A 8

The LAW clearly states, that as the applicant, (Crowell) had the obligation to prove he met the requirements of 1.221 (C).
By NOT attending the hearing, He failed to comply with the law.

Your comment misses the obvious. His failure to attend a hearing he said he could not attend reinforces precisely what he was saying. In fact, the ALJ may have abused his discretion in denying the relief requested for a hearing closer to home.


Read

B. BAD FAITH 11. & 12.

The presiding Judge ordered Crowell to show why (His) abuse of the process should not be ruled.

He failed to produce that evidence too.

The judge had no other legal option and ruled against Crowell with PREJUDICE.

All the rest is just B.S. by Crowell

As mentioned, the issue at this point is not whether he acted inappropriately as an operator but whether the ALJ afforded him due process and/or abused his discretion in failing to grant the relief requested.

I'm not suggesting that this is a slam dunk either way - just that there's something here. I'll be curious to see how the appeal goes.
 

RF_Exorcist

Member
Jun 1, 2017
14
5
13
42
I guess you guys miss his constant and ongoing QRMing of the WARFA nets

The situation with WARFA isn't part of the original HDO from 2007.

I don't know where you are getting your info from, but, He NEVER established compliance with 1.221.(C), therefore he AGREED to travel to D.C., and then failed to do so.

https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/0710051601041/FCC-18M-05A1.pdf

Paragraph II A 8

The LAW clearly states, that as the applicant, (Crowell) had the obligation to prove he met the requirements of 1.221 (C). By NOT attending the hearing, He failed to comply with the law.

In matters such as this, there is no good reason not to grant [and, generally, the Government waives strict compliance with 1.221(C)] a field hearing.

Bill wasn't granted one due to Riley's hurt feelings.


The presiding Judge ordered Crowell to show why (His) abuse of the process should not be ruled.

He failed to produce that evidence too.

The judge had no other legal option and ruled against Crowell with PREJUDICE.

The Commission never proved "bad faith". The fact that the Commission alleged it doesn't make it so.

Remember, this is the same Commission that's attempting to argue poor character not due to any tangible display of poor character like a criminal record or some bad act, but because Bill once referred to himself as the, "Water Buffalo Jammer" and because he was critical of Riley for, among other things, imaginary rule violations like IDing with phonetics or using a simplex frequency Riley didn't realize was a simplex frequency.

We needn't broach the subject of his entirely arbitrary retests, proposed as being in line with the rules because they were really about ensuring the integrity of the VE program - while only retesting one or two out of hundreds or thousands of people who took tests from the same VE programs.

Oh, and there was that matter of him forcing a retest on a guy who hadn't actually taken his exams through a VE, which no provision is made for under Part 97.

All the rest is just B.S. by Crowell

It's BS that this thing took the direction it took when the Commission never had anything other than complaints from four guy - three of whom are dead - and recordings that weren't made by Commission staff or ARRL volunteers or NFIs, all of which Bill addressed prior to Riley pushing for the HDO.
 

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