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Coast Guard Hunts Hoaxer Who Cost It $500K

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The US Coast Guard says it’s looking for a man who has cost the service about $500,000 after responding to nearly 30 of his fake distress calls, reports the AP. In a press release published Friday, the Coast Guard says the 28 calls have originated from around the area of Annapolis, Maryland. Each call involved the same male voice and used an emergency radio channel. He’s been making the calls since July 2014.

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The two most recent calls were made on the night of July 21 and the early morning of July 22. “A hoax call is a deadly and serious offense,” a Coast Guard rep tells NBC4, which notes that such calls are a felony that carry six years in prison, $10,000 civil fine, $250,000 criminal fine, and reimbursement to the Coast Guard. “Calls like these not only put our crews at risk, but they put the lives of the public at risk.”

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