Get Your Money and Property BackIt is not uncommon in Louisiana for the police to take your money or car after pulling you over for certain crimes. If you have a lot of money on your person, or the police believe that your car has been used as an instrument in the commission of a crime, they can seize the property. In fact, it's very common for them to seize several thousands of dollars and then simply let you go. You need a lawyer to help you get it back.
As Baton Rouge attorneys, we use experience and skill with this process to seek to stop asset forfeiture and help you get your money or property back as soon as possible. Please don't hesitate to give us a call. All too often citizens allow law enforcement to keep their property simply out of fear.
The SituationThe common scenario for asset forfeiture or property seizure looks like this: You are stopped by the police and you have narcotics or money, or both in the vehicle. The police seize the money or the car, or both. It's as simple as that. Oftentimes, law enforcement will call the K-9 unit to the scene. The dog almost always alerts to drugs. What the officers don't tell you however, is that an estimated 90% of US currency is laced with cocaine.
The Asset Forfeiture ProcessOnce the police have taken your money and/or automobile:
- Someone needs to claim the asset and verify that it was obtained through legal means, or else it will be seized permanently.
- You have 30 days to file a claim with the District Attorney's Office and the agency that seized the assets. You must serve both entities within 30 days from notice of forfeiture or your chance to stop the asset forfeiture will be lost.
- Once you have filed the claim, the process looks less like a criminal trial and more like a civil action with the same discovery techniques that occur in civil proceedings.