Maximale boete radiopiraten flink omlaag, maar de waarschuwing brief is afgeschaft per 01 December 2019 dus gelijk bij de eerste keer 2500 € betalen.

English version

Since 1 December, radio pirates can no longer receive a fine of 45,000 euros for illegal broadcasts. The Telecom Agency (AT) applies a fine of 15,000 euros as a maximum in its new policy.

The maximum amount of € 45,000 that could be imposed between 2010 and 2019 would no longer be legally justified. The minimum fine does, however, increase, making radio pirates automatically more expensive than ever before with every violation found.

The Telecom Agency, part of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate, has been applying a ‘stick-on-piece’ policy since 2013. Ether pirates detected by inspectors in the field no longer receive a warning letter but a direct fine. Between November 2013 and November 2019, a detailed record turner could expect a fine of between 2,500 and 45,000 euros.

Minimum up

The new sanctions of the AT ensure that the maximum amount is reduced to 15,000 euros. That seems to work out cheaper for radio pirates, but in many cases that is not the case. That is because the minimum amount is increased. The written fine will now be the sum. For example, the AT charges a ‘boarding rate’ of € 2,500 for every violation. In addition, there is a sum for the geographic range (number of kilometers) and the demographic range (number of potential listeners in that area). In the event of a threat and / or destruction, the pirate can expect an even higher fine.

Spokesperson Frans van Bergen of the AT confirms that the fine is now a sum based on these factors. In this way, a pirate who was previously fined 2,500 euros can now receive a sum of 6,500 euros, for example. According to Van Bergen, with the new policy the Telecom Agency wants to radiate transparency towards the pirates: “In this way a pirate can, so to speak, estimate in advance how high his fine will be”.

The Telecom Agency hopes that this will definitely kill pirates. “Pirates can interfere with all kinds of communication systems, which puts security at risk,” the spokesman adds. He also emphasizes that there are numerous legal options for making radio yourself, such as an event frequency or via the internet.

Chances of unmanned stations are greater

In practice, the above regulations will mainly be applied to ‘manned’ pirates. These are record turners that have their mast and studio on their own plot. Unmanned pirates often place a transmitter with a mast in a forest or telecom mast. Via special equipment, the pirate sends his music program to the unmanned mast, who then broadcasts it on the FM band. Investigation officers of the AT find no one at the mast at such a moment and often only confiscate the stuff. An investigation into the relevant installer of the equipment is usually omitted and so the pirate avoids a fine.

The purchase value of an unmanned installation is usually lower than the minimum fine for a manned transmitter. The chance that even more pirates will now be unmanned to prevent the minimum fine, and thus cause damage to nature or to telecom masts, is increasing. Spokesperson Frans van Bergen does not discuss this possibility in substance.

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