back to article Florida man, Chinese biz fined $48k, $35m on mobe signal jam raps

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has fined a Florida chap and a Chinese business over cellphone jamming boxes. The watchdog said it will try to extract [PDF] $34.9m from Shenzhen-based retailer CTS Technologies for marketing illegal jammers and, in a separate case, will fine [PDF] a bloke $48,000 for using a …

Anonymous Coward

Jammers are useless

(from the link) ...kept the jammer in truck and activated during his daily commute in order to prevent other drivers from using their mobile devices behind the wheel...

I sort of sympathize -- today I saw a honk duel between two drivers, one which had the right of way and the other (who honked longer and angrier while gesturing -- I was expecting him to transform himself into The Incredible Honker) that was talking on a cell phone and not really paying attention. I just don't think a jammer would solve the problem since the other driver would just pay even more attention to his cell phone to figure out what was happening. Honker Smash Puny Phone!

Even so I don't think the $48.000 fine is proportional to the "crime". How much would be the fine to have in my car one of those Ben Hur or 007 devices that shreds other drivers' tires?

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Re: Jammers are useless

How much would be the fine to have in my car one of those Ben Hur or 007 devices that shreds other drivers' tires?

Local law not a federal... But I'm not even sure there's a law on the books in most places for that. Then there's misdemeanor or felony if there is a law. If you shredded someone's tires going down the road.. different story then. If you get some, let us know... I can think of a few idiots who need to be off the road and in a ditch.

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Re: Jammers are useless

> "But I'm not even sure there's a law on the books in most places for that."

It would come under "tampering with a passenger vehicle in an unsafe way" or something similar.

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Silver badge

Re: Couldn't call in an emergency?

Yep - because passengers never use a cellphone, only drivers.

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Re: Couldn't call in an emergency?

And all of those satnav devices, using GPS or data conenctions (such as Google Maps) to function.

Should they just be fucked over too? Not to mention passengers of cars, buses etc.

Now if it was in the cinema or my local pub on quiz night, now we're talking reasonable...

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Re: Couldn't call in an emergency?

There's also pedestrians, people who live or work on the route, some alarm systems, some IoT etc. that would be effected!

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Headmaster

Re: Couldn't call in an emergency?

...would be affected.

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The FCC are going to try to fine a company in China? Where it's possibly entirely legal to make jammers? Yet another US outfit with delusions of world jurisdiction.

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For selling it in / importing it to the US, yes. They can make whatever they want so long as they only sell it in China.

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But that's not really how it works. I can buy things that are illegal here; but it's perfectly legal for the foreign company to produce, sell directly and post the product to me. It would be me that's committing the offence.

The FCC might have some chance if the company has a presence in the US; but -given their business- I wouldn't have thought so. There may be a few middlemen and importers the FCC could nail; but if producing jammers is legal in China then there's not a lot the FCC can do about it..

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How is it getting into the country? If they are responsible for getting it imported, they are breaking the law. If you are going overseas and buying it, and bringing it back into the country yourself, then yeah they are free and clear, but that's not what happened here. They were probably selling them on eBay or something, and by sending them to the US they have broken US law.

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"producing jammers is legal in China"

Producing them, yes, switching them on no.

It wouldn't be too hard for the FCC to request chinese govt cooperation on this.

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If they are responsible for getting it imported, they are breaking the law.

They are breaking *US* law from outside the jurisdiction of that law. Unless they have presence/assets in the US why should they care?

USians seem to be unable to deal with the fact that whatever law applies to you doesn't necessarily apply to others. In a way it's understandable because it's such a big country and somewhat homogenised (state-to-state differences, sure, but mostly the same game wherever you go). From here, a 500 mile journey could drop me in countries with completely different cultures, different languages, different currencies and different laws.

So the jammer manufacturer could be well aware that they are breaking US law, and simply not give a toss. Assets in the US could be confiscated and -likewise- US holidays wouldn't be a bright idea for the execs but they would be otherwise untouchable unless the Chinese government intervenes.

An example: It is illegal for Australians to have laser pointers above a certain power. Last time I checked, it's perfectly legal where I am to have any laser pointer I desire; and moreover to post it to whoever I feel like. So I could perfectly legally buy a big box of the most powerful pointers I could find and post them to Australia. I would not be breaking any laws -even Australian ones- because I am not in their jurisdiction and so their law does not apply to me. If I personally took the pointers there, or if I ordered one from within Australia then, yes, I would be breaking the law. Othewise no.

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Ru'

"285 different models..." Wow, that's some produce lineup. Must be a pain being a salesperson for them and trying to recommend one ideal unit for a particular customer's needs...

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Anonymous Coward

Not a bad product line.

Hmm, I am rather interested in their powerful drone jammer. Let's see if I get that through customs here..

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Let's see if I get that through customs here..

Only $3.95 with a $48000 customs fee!

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Re: Let's see if I get that through customs here..

You'll soon make that back if you land the police helicopters gently.

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The silent treatment?

Caused by his own jammer, methinks.

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really

Having survived a rather nasty accident on the Florida turnpike a few years ago I beg to differ, one of the drivers of a pick up involved only survived by luck, and that was that a surgeon was in one the cars behind he quickly called it in with a correct diagnoses , that gentleman would require blood plasma onsite as he was badly trapped in a mess of crushed vehicles, that man is alive because of one mobile phone call.

So some silly little tin foil hat wearing idiot war driving with a jammer is absolutely absurd, and the hammer that should fall on that crown of aluminum should hurt

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Facepalm

Re: really

Well you could always turn the jammer off.

Alternatively you could just walk away 'til you get a signal. You know, like every bugger in the world does when there's no signal somewhere.

Just out of interest, why don't the networks get fined $48,000 for every "dead zone" if it's such a massive safety issue? You'd almost think that it, er, wasn't really........

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Re: really

> that was that a surgeon was in one the cars behind he quickly called it in with a correct diagnoses ,

> that gentleman would require blood plasma onsite as he was badly trapped in a mess of crushed

> vehicles, that man is alive because of one mobile phone call.

I suspect that the accidents due to driving whilst distracted by a mobile phone are more frequent than the above described incident.

It's such a shame that most people won't buy a car that's engaging and enjoyable to drive, instead preferring to play with their phone or the electronic tinsel in the car instead.

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Joke

Humphreys has given the regulator the silent treatment over the past two years.

That jammer of his really works!

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how was he caught

Considering he was a mobile jammer, did the authorities home in on his jamming signal?

I would like to know how they singled him out for prosecution.

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The police caught him, and he ended up in the slammer,

'Cause the law don't want no gear jammer.

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CTS Who?

"The FCC says that it has not yet been able to contact CTS to deliver notification of its decision."

Yeah, good luck with that. Being a Chinese company, they've probably already been dissolved, and reformed as a completely different entity from a legal standpoint. Corporations, unlike like Human people, can just disappear, change their name, and be absolved of all past crimes.

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