No person within the jurisdiction of the United States shall knowingly utter or transmit, or cause to be uttered or transmitted, any false or fraudulent signal of distress, or communication relating thereto, nor shall any broadcasting station rebroadcast the program or any part thereof of another broadcasting station without the express authority of the originating station.
No person shall be permitted to locate, use, or maintain a radio broadcast studio or other place or apparatus from which or whereby sound waves are converted into electrical energy, or mechanical or physical reproduction of sound waves produced, and caused to be transmitted or delivered to a radio station in a foreign country for the purpose of being broadcast from any radio station there having a power output of sufficient intensity and/or being so located geographically that its emissions may be received consistently in the United States, without first obtaining a permit from the Commission upon proper application therefor.
Such application shall contain such information as the Commission may by regulation prescribe, and the granting or refusal thereof shall be subject to the requirements of section 309 of this title with respect to applications for station licenses or renewal or modification thereof, and the license or permission so granted shall be revocable for false statements in the application so required or when the Commission, after hearings, shall find its continuation no longer in the public interest.
For purposes of any proceeding under this subsection, any satellite carrier that retransmits the signal of any broadcast station shall be deemed to designate the Secretary of the Commission as its agent for service of process. A television broadcast station may serve a satellite carrier with a complaint concerning an alleged violation of subsection (b)(1) through retransmission of a station within the local market of such station by filing the original and two copies of the complaint with the Secretary of the Commission and serving a copy of the complaint on the satellite carrier by means of two commonly used overnight delivery services, each addressed to the chief executive officer of the satellite carrier at its principal place of business, and each marked “URGENT LITIGATION MATTER” on the outer packaging. Service shall be deemed complete one business day after a copy of the complaint is provided to the delivery services for overnight delivery. On receipt of a complaint filed by a television broadcast station under this subsection, the Secretary of the Commission shall send the original complaint by United States mail, postage prepaid, receipt requested, addressed to the chief executive officer of the satellite carrier at its principal place of business.
Within five business days after the date of service, the satellite carrier shall file an answer with the Commission and shall serve the answer by a commonly used overnight delivery service and by United States mail, on the counsel designated in the complaint at the address listed for such counsel in the complaint.
The defenses under this paragraph are the exclusive defenses available to a satellite carrier against which a complaint under this subsection is filed.
With respect to each alleged violation, the burden of proof shall be on a television broadcast station to establish that the satellite carrier retransmitted the station to at least one person in the local market of the station on the day in question. The burden of proof shall be on the satellite carrier with respect to all defenses other than the defense under paragraph (4)(B)(i).
Within 45 days after the filing of a complaint, the Commission shall issue a final determination in any proceeding brought under this subsection. The Commission’s final determination shall specify the number of violations committed by the satellite carrier. The Commission shall hear witnesses only if it clearly appears, based on written filings by the parties, that there is a genuine dispute about material facts. Except as provided in the preceding sentence, the Commission may issue a final ruling based on written filings by the parties.
The Commission may direct the parties to exchange pertinent documents, and if necessary to take prehearing depositions, on such schedule as the Commission may approve, but only if the Commission first determines that such discovery is necessary to resolve a genuine dispute about material facts, consistent with the obligation to make a final determination within 45 days.
The procedure for an appeal under this paragraph by the satellite carrier shall supersede any other appeal rights under Federal or State law. A United States district court shall be deemed to have personal jurisdiction over the satellite carrier if the carrier, or a company under common control with the satellite carrier, has delivered television programming by satellite to more than 30 customers in that district during the preceding 4-year period. If the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia does not have personal jurisdiction over the satellite carrier, an enforcement action or appeal shall be brought in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, which may find personal jurisdiction based on the satellite carrier’s ownership of licenses issued by the Commission. An application by a television broadcast station for an order enforcing any cease-and-desist relief granted by the Commission shall be resolved on a highly expedited schedule. No discovery may be conducted by the parties in any such proceeding. The district court shall enforce the Commission order unless the Commission record reflects manifest error and an abuse of discretion by the Commission.
Within 6 months after issuance of an order by the Commission under this subsection, a television broadcast station may file a civil action in any United States district court that has personal jurisdiction over the satellite carrier for an award of statutory damages for any violation that the Commission has determined to have been committed by a satellite carrier under this subsection. Such action shall not be subject to transfer under section 1404(a) of title 28. On finding that the satellite carrier has committed one or more violations of subsection (b), the District Court shall be required to award the television broadcast station statutory damages of $25,000 per violation, in accordance with paragraph (5), and the costs and attorney’s fees incurred by the station. Such statutory damages shall be awarded only if the television broadcast station has filed a binding stipulation with the court that such station will donate the full amount in excess of $1,000 of any statutory damage award to the United States Treasury for public purposes. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a station shall incur no tax liability of any kind with respect to any amounts so donated. Discovery may be conducted by the parties in any proceeding under this paragraph only if and to the extent necessary to resolve a genuinely disputed issue of fact concerning one of the defenses under paragraph (4). In any such action, the defenses under paragraph (4) shall be exclusive, and the burden of proof shall be on the satellite carrier with respect to all defenses other than the defense under paragraph (4)(B)(i). A judgment under this paragraph may be enforced in any manner permissible under Federal or State law.
The nonprevailing party before a United States district court may appeal a decision under this subsection to the United States Court of Appeals with jurisdiction over that district court. The Court of Appeals shall not issue any stay of the effectiveness of any decision granting relief against a satellite carrier unless the carrier presents clear and convincing evidence that it is highly likely to prevail on appeal and only after posting a bond for the full amount of any monetary award assessed against it and for such further amount as the Court of Appeals may believe appropriate.