Loading...

Conservative Hoaxers Face $5.1M Fine for Election Robocalls

August 26, 2021by David Eggert, Associated Press
Conservative Hoaxers Face $5.1M Fine for Election Robocalls
In this. Oct. 8, 2020 image from video provided by the 36th District Court in Detroit, Jacob Wohl, left, and Jack Burkman, shown in the center left photo, are seen during an arraignment being conducted over Zoom in Detroit. (36th District Court/Zoom via AP Rile)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Two conservative hoaxers face a record $5.1 million fine for allegedly making illegal robocalls to wireless phones without the owners’ consent in the 2020 election.

The Federal Communications Commission said Tuesday that the proposed fine for Jacob Wohl, Jack Burkman and Burkman’s lobbying firm would be the largest ever for violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

The men already face criminal charges in multiple states over allegedly organizing 85,000 robocalls that falsely warned people in predominantly Black areas of New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio and Michigan that information gleaned from mail-in ballots could lead to their arrest, debt collection and forced vaccination.

The FCC said federal law prohibits making prerecorded calls to cellphones without the permission of those receiving the calls. The agency, which determined 1,141 calls went to mobile phones on Aug. 26 and Sept. 14, proposed a $4,500 fine for each one.

Regulators launched their investigation following consumer complaints and concerns raised by a national civil rights group, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

The FCC said it worked with the Ohio attorney general’s office to obtain subpoenas from two dialing service providers showing emails from Burkman and Wohl, including ZIP codes to target and “the tape we want to go out.” They will have an opportunity to respond before the commission takes action.

In emails to The Associated Press on Wednesday, Wohl and Burkman said the Biden administration is looking to distract from the U.S. pullout of Afghanistan and other woes.

“We will not be deterred or discouraged,” Wohl said. Burkman called the proposed fine “sad.”

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, whose office is prosecuting the men, said “this massive fine properly reflects the seriousness of the allegations these two political operatives face.”

The FCC said it was the first time it issued notice of a fine without first issuing a citation, citing a 2019 change in the law.

In The News

Health

Voting

Law

January 28, 2022
by Reece Nations
Jan. 6 Committee Issues Subpoenas to ‘Alternate Electors’ 

WASHINGTON — The House Select Committee to Investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the United States Capitol issued subpoenas on... Read More

WASHINGTON — The House Select Committee to Investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the United States Capitol issued subpoenas on Friday to 14 individuals who filed fake Electoral College certificates declaring former President Donald Trump the winner of their states. The subpoenaed activists and officials, referred... Read More

January 21, 2022
by Dan McCue
Judge Blocks Vaccine Mandate for Federal Workers

GALVESTON, Texas — A federal judge in Texas issued a preliminary injunction on Friday blocking the Biden administration from requiring... Read More

GALVESTON, Texas — A federal judge in Texas issued a preliminary injunction on Friday blocking the Biden administration from requiring that federal workers be vaccinated against the coronavirus. But the ruling by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Brown is expected to have little impact. As of Friday,... Read More

January 21, 2022
by Dan McCue
Governor Moves to Update, Expand Massachusetts’ Outdated Wiretap Law

BOSTON — Massachusetts’ wiretap statute, adopted in 1968 as a tool to combat organized crime, is now woefully out of... Read More

BOSTON — Massachusetts’ wiretap statute, adopted in 1968 as a tool to combat organized crime, is now woefully out of date; it needs a major revision to better equip law enforcement for the realities of the 21st century, the state’s governor said on Friday. “As technology... Read More

January 20, 2022
by Dan McCue
Supreme Court Holds Trial Court Erred in Child Killing Case

WASHINGTON — A New York trial court violated a criminal defendant's Sixth Amendment rights when it allowed, over his objection,... Read More

WASHINGTON — A New York trial court violated a criminal defendant's Sixth Amendment rights when it allowed, over his objection, for the reading of a plea transcript of an unavailable witness to be admitted and read aloud in the courtroom. The case before the court, Hemphill... Read More

January 20, 2022
by Tom Ramstack
Case Dismissed Against Professor Charged With Spying for China

BOSTON — Federal prosecutors on Thursday dropped charges against a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor accused of spying for China... Read More

BOSTON — Federal prosecutors on Thursday dropped charges against a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor accused of spying for China in another blow to a Trump administration effort to protect U.S. intellectual property. Gang Chen, who was born in China but is a naturalized American, was... Read More

January 19, 2022
by Reece Nations
Arkansas Inmates Sue Jail for Treating COVID With Ivermectin Without Consent

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of four inmates at... Read More

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of four inmates at an Arkansas jail who were unknowingly administered ivermectin to treat their cases of COVID-19. The plaintiffs in the case allege they were misled about the drugs... Read More

News From The Well
Exit mobile version