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Louisiana Money and Asset Forfeiture Attorney
Money and Asset Forfeiture Attorney in Shreveport, Bossier City, Monroe, & Ruston, LA
In the state of Louisiana, it’s not uncommon for law enforcement officials to seize property owned by people involved in a crime, related to the cause of a crime, or which aided in making crime easier or harder to detect. This is called asset forfeiture. Although the word forfeiture makes it sound like the assets are given up at will, it’s almost a guarantee that won’t be the case.
Whether it’s your home, vehicle, or other personal property, having your assets seized by law enforcement because of their alleged involvement in a crime is an unsettling experience. Losing vital assets disrupts your normal routine, and getting them back costs an abundance of time and resources. If you’re in the midst of asset forfeiture and are working to get your valuable possessions back, turn to the attorneys at John D. & Eric G. Johnson Law Firm for help.
Louisiana Asset Forfeiture Laws
Louisiana Rev Stat § 14:54.4 outlines asset forfeiture laws and describes what property can be seized by law enforcement officials and what they can do with the property once it has been seized. In the state of Louisiana, law enforcement officials have the upper hand when it comes to asset forfeiture. In order to seize property and retain it, officials simply must have a preponderance of the evidence, showing that by a greater than 50% probability, the asset was likely used in a crime. To get the asset back, the owner must be able to prove that the item was either not used in a crime or they did not have knowledge/give permission for the item to be involved in any criminal activity.
Once an asset has officially been seized by law enforcement officials and the owners are unable to get it back, those officials can do with it as they please. Often times, if an asset is in a safe and usable condition, it will be sold to the public and the law enforcement agency can retain the profits.
Examples of Asset Forfeiture
Although it might seem complicated, situations in which asset forfeiture takes place are typically straightforward – an item is suspected of being involved in criminal activity and that item is taken.
Here’s an example.
You’re driving your car down the highway when you get pulled over during a routine traffic stop. While searching your car, the authorities find the $5,000 in cash you just won from a casino. Suspecting illegal activity, the authorities seize the cash and your car. Now you need to prove your innocence before you can get your money and car back.
Regaining Assets in Louisiana
If you’re a victim of asset forfeiture, the most viable option you have for regaining your assets is to enlist the services of a trustworthy attorney. It’s important to note that if your assets have been seized, you need to file a claim within 30 days with both the District Attorney’s office and the agency that seized it. If you don’t, they’ll retain your belongings. Once you have filed your claim, an attorney can help you navigate the process of proving that your belongings were not used in the commission of a crime.
Aggressive and Persistent Asset Forfeiture Lawyers in Louisiana
Regaining your assets following asset forfeiture is a task that requires an aggressive strategy and dutiful persistence. At John D. & Eric G. Johnson Law Firm, our team will stop at nothing to prove your innocence and gain your assets back. We have been practicing law for more than 25 years and during that time we have successfully defended thousands of clients across the state of Louisiana. Now we’re ready to win your defense as well.
To discuss the viable defense options for your asset forfeiture case with an attorney, call our Louisiana office at 318-377-1555 today. Or you can fill out our easy online contact form to schedule a free consultation.