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Friday, October 9, 2009

When you have a 6 month seizure

I’m keeping an eye on the SCOTUS case Alvarez vs Smith. The various states’ drug crime property seizure laws are ridiculous and ripe for abuse.

The Illinois Drug Asset Forfeiture Procedure Act (DAFPA) permits the warrantless seizure of personal property involved in certain drug crimes as long as there is probable cause to believe it was involved in a drug crime and, therefore, subject to forfeiture.  Although forfeiture proceedings are required under DAFPA, as many as 187 days can elapse between the seizure and the filing of judicial forfeiture proceedings.

Basically the question comes down to, after a seizure of your property, how long can they keep you in suspense before they really decide whether it was a valid seizure. The problem is that if they seize your car for 6 months, it may put a serious dent into your ability to earn a living.

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