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Radio Free Brattleboro Shut Down By Feds

At 6:58 a.m., June 22, 2005, armed with a warrant issued by a Burlington magistrate, United States Marshals entered the studios of radio free brattleboro and seized its broadcasting equipment. The seizure of equipment and shutdown of rfb's local broadcasts under authority of a warrant issued in Burlington comes while an action is still pending before Judge J. Garvan Murtha in the federal court in Brattleboro.
Radio Free Brattleboro Shut Down By Feds

Contact:
James Maxwell, Esq. (802) 257-1299
Larry Bloch (802)254-9106


At 6:58 this morning, June 22, 2005, armed with a warrant issued by a Burlington magistrate, United States Marshals entered the studios of radio free brattleboro and seized its broadcasting equipment. The seizure of equipment and shutdown of rfb's local broadcasts under authority of a warrant issued in Burlington comes while an action is still pending before Judge J. Garvan Murtha in the federal court in Brattleboro.

In March of 2004 radio free brattleboro filed for an injunction in the District Court in Brattleboro, asking the Court to prohibit the FCC from seizing equipment. The United States District Attorney, representing the FCC, filed a reciprocal action for injunction to shut down the radio station. These dueling actions were finally whittled down to one action and the rfb request for injunction was dropped,
due to the following statement in a filing made by the United States:

In its suit, rfb seeks to enjoin the FCC from seizing its equipment or from stopping it from broadcasting without a hearing. Because neither of these eventualities are threatened, the suit is essentially moot. The FCC has chosen not to try to seize the
equipment of rbf but to proceed by way of a preliminary injunction. Thus, there is no controversy about imminent seizure of equipment for this Court to remedy or enjoin. Moreover, since rfb is receiving a hearing on March 15 [2004], it will not be stopped
from broadcasting without a hearing. Thus, the matters that it asks to be remedied do not need a remedy.

This constituted the Government's assurance that it contemplated no seizure of rfb's equipment and rfb did drop its own action for an
injunction.

In April of 2005, with matters still pending in the U.S. District Court in Brattleboro, rfb received a letter from the U.S. Attorney' s office in Burlington stating that the FCC was prepared to pursue other law enforcement remedies . Rfb was puzzled by this new threat, as it had dropped its original action for an injunction because of the Government's assurance that the regular court process in Brattleboro would be the venue for the dispute. Accordingly, rfb replied to the U.S. Attorney's office stating:

The radio station has continued operating because the FCC's complaint to the court has yet to receive a ruling either on the preliminary or permanent injunctions you [FCC] seek. Your review of the file doubtless informs you that rfb originally applied for an injunction to bar the FCC from exactly the action you now contemplate, under 47 U.S.C. 510. The station voluntarily agreed to a dismissal of its complaint for injunction because of the pending injunction petition put in by the FCC. In the given posture, I do not believe this district court or any appeals court will say that rfb was obliged to shut down: shut-down is precisely the question for which we await the judge's answer. Your threatened action is, therefore, an end run, is it not?

On May 3, 2005, the Government filed for summary judgment in the case pending in Brattleboro. Radio free brattleboro responded to that motion and therefore the FCC?s case asking for an injunction to shut down rfb remains, today, in the hands of Judge Murtha in Brattleboro.

Radio free brattleboro's attorney, James Maxwell, commented: "This is on one level no surprise. The FCC has run out of patience with the regular court process in Brattleboro and has gone elsewhere for the relief it seeks, namely, a chance to get the U.S. Marshals into the station to grab the equipment. Radio free brattleboro has a case with substantial and legitimate legal issues pending in the federal court here in Brattleboro, and the station has also applied to the FCC for a waiver to broadcast, and it has repeatedly stated that when the newly licensed 100-watt station is up and running it would step aside. Rfb does not operate in defiance of government but rather from the belief of its members and listeners that community radio is essential to good government and democratic process. Radio free brattleboro has always stressed to the public and to the FCC that it will adhere to FCC guidelines and will serve the public whether licensed or not." Nevertheless, it is very much a surprise that the FCC has done an end run around the court here in Brattleboro and obtained a warrant from Burlington even while diverting our attention by applying for summary judgment here. It has undertaken these clever maneuvers, in my opinion, not because it must shut down the station but because it can shut down thestation. For there is no harm whatsoever being done by rfb, while there surely is harm being done to a civil society by the broadcast and cable and satellite conglomerates whose idea of serving the public is to process entertainment, information and advertisements for mass consumption, which is to say for no one at all. It's a sad and disappointing day, but of course we will explore our options.
 
 


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rfb 107.9 fm

rfb1079.gif
radio free brattleboro
www.rfb.fm
 

Background on RFB

From the Rockin' the Boat archives...

May, 2004
"Strategies for Microradio Activists:" discussion with Larry Bloch of RFB, and Mark Vermuellen, attorney for SFLR from May, 2004. www.radio4all.net/index.php&

June, 2003
"Radio Free Brattleboro Shuts Down"
A dialogue with Radio Free Brattleboro co-founder David Long, who voluntarily ceased operations 6/24/03 after an FCC visit. Interview is halfway through the file:
www.radio4all.net/index.php&
 

Rockin' the Boat: RFB Busted

Interview with Larry BLoch about RFB court case against the FCC and shut down, June 22.
rtb_rfb_busted.mp3
rtb_rfb_busted.mp3 (8192 k)
Rockin' the Boat airs Fridays from 3-5 PM on Freak RAdio Santa Cruz, 101.1 FM, www.freakradio.org
 

Photos Show Aftermath of RFB Bust

Some photos...
20050622115258893_1.jpg
after the FCC raids RFB
20050622115258893_2.jpg
 

Re: Radio Free Brattleboro Shut Down By Feds

shows how we can trust the government. we will have to file in every court in the nation to keep all bases covered
 

Re: Radio Free Brattleboro Shut Down By Feds

Looks like they left alot of stuff behind, headphones, keyboard,mouse etc proably in a hurry didnt want to get caught like a bunch a cockroaches(not to give cockroaches a bad name)
FCC aint nothin but DOGMEAT!!
 

Re: Radio Free Brattleboro Shut Down By Feds

Time for WAR. This really is too much. And to think we pay, with tax dollars, people to strong arm a perfectly innocent citizen's station. It isn't an issue of interference. RFB had been on since about 2003. It was simply a conservative Bush appointed Fed judge and a desperate grasp for power by the FCC. This rade has created more ill will than it protected anyone. Of course it did protect the multi-millioniare corporate trash broadcasters from having to compete. More and more people are tuning the noise and dull brained drivel of FM out. It was RFB that gave the people a voice and a chance to even DJ a program. Where in the corporate world could you do that?
 

seeds planted down under

bill_posters.jpg
is innocent
about the mass-murdoch; we're truly sorry.

we have some seriously messed up kids in the southern continent from murdochonian experiments.

if you have seen john hoWARd goofin off with boy george, well, we know it's gonna take a while.

thanks for inspiration.



FRSC not streaming down under.
any problem there?
 

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