Rep. Sensenbrenner Reintroduces the DUE PROCESS ACT to Reform Civil Asset Forfeiture Practices
“The DUE PROCESS Act Brings Us One Step Closer To Meaningful Reform That Will Tamper Abuse And Protect Citizens’ Constitutional Rights”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner reintroduced the Deterring Undue Enforcement by Protecting Rights of Citizens from Excessive Searches and Seizures (DUE PROCESS) Act in the House of Representatives.
The DUE PROCESS Act builds upon changes made in the 2000 Civil Action Forfeiture Reform Act by increasing transparency in the civil asset forfeiture process, adding protections for innocent property owners, and implementing additional protections to ensure property owners have the opportunity to contest seizures. The legislation also improves the notice that the government must give property owners and makes it easier for them to be heard by a judge.
Additionally, the DUE PROCESS Act entitles property owners to an initial hearing, where they can retrieve confiscated property immediately if it was not seized according to the law. It increases the availability of attorney fees for innocent owners, places a higher burden of proof on the government, and allows for owners of confiscated animals to retrieve their pets faster.
Congressman Sensenbrenner: “Civil asset forfeiture is a critical component of the overall effort to fix our broken criminal justice system, and the DUE PROCESS Act makes common sense changes to federal forfeiture laws that help innocent Americans. Its reintroduction today brings us one step closer to meaningful reform that will tamper abuse and protect citizens’ Constitutional rights.”