An Austin pirate radio station that airs controversial host Alex Jones has been knocked off the city’s airwaves – at least temporarily – and the Federal Communications Commission has levied a $15,000 penalty that the station’s operators are refusing to pay.
A lawsuit filed this week in U.S. District Court in Austin accuses Liberty Radio of operating at 90.1 FM without federal consent since at least 2013. Religious programming was airing on that frequency Wednesday, in place of Liberty Radio.
A check of the Liberty Radio website, txlr.net, indicated the station stopped being transmitted over the air in December, but has been streaming online and via a call-in “listen line.”
According to court documents, FCC enforcement agents from Houston were called to the Austin area to investigate 90.1 FM after the agency received a complaint. Using high-tech equipment, those agents were able to trace the signal to the Orchard Plaza apartments at 1127 and 1205 E. 52nd St. in East Austin.
The agents reported that Liberty Radio was being operated out of some sort of maintenance or utility room at the complex. Travis Central Appraisal District records indicate that up until late last year, the complex – subject of numerous well-publicized city nuisance violations – had been owned by an entity linked to Walter Olenick and M. Rae Nadler-Olenick, who are listed as the two defendants in the federal lawsuit over Liberty Radio.