The FCC has hit Spanish Broadcasting System with two fines of $16,000 each as a result of what the regulator says was a rule violation in relation to a prank call made last year on "El Vacilon de la Mañana."

According to an FCC document, the agency received three complaints over the July 19, 2007 broadcast of a call - purportedly from a hospital - in which a woman was told her husband had been shot to death and her daughter had been fatally run over by a car. After the woman became hysterical, the contractor hired to make the call told the woman it was a prank.

SBS says the woman gave permission for the call to be broadcast after it was recorded, according to the FCC. But Miami's WXDJ El Zol and New York's La Mega WSKQ, which aired the call, were found in violation of an FCC rule due to "the failure to inform the call recipient prior to recording the call that it was intended for broadcast," according to the agency. SBS declined comment. The broadcaster has 30 days to contest the Oct. 17 fine notice.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

Print