Gang-Related Legislation by Subject Index

Gang Activity and Forfeiture

Alaska (view all subjects for this state)

Alaska § 12.55.015. Authorized Sentences; Forfeiture

(a) Except as limited by AS 12.55.125 - 12.55.175, the court, in imposing sentence on a defendant convicted of an offense, may singly or in combination

(11) order the forfeiture to the state of a motor vehicle, weapon, electronic communication device, or money or other valuables, used in or obtained through an offense that was committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with a criminal street gang.

Florida (view all subjects for this state)

Florida § 874.08. Criminal Gang Activity and Recruitment; Forfeiture

All profits, proceeds, and instrumentalities of criminal gang activity and all property used or intended or attempted to be used to facilitate the criminal activity of any criminal gang or of any criminal gang member; and all profits, proceeds, and instrumentalities of criminal gang recruitment and all property used or intended or attempted to be used to facilitate criminal gang recruitment are subject to seizure and forfeiture under the Florida Contraband Forfeiture Act, s. 932.704.

Florida § 874.12. Identification Documents; Unlawful Possession or Creation.

(1) For purposes of this section, the term "identification document" includes, but is not limited to, a social security card or number, a birth certificate, a driver's license, an identification card issued pursuant to s. 322.051, a naturalization certificate, an alien registration number, a passport, and any access credentials for a publicly operated facility or an infrastructure facility covered under 18 U.S.C. s. 2332f.

(2) Any person possessing or manufacturing any blank, forged, stolen, fictitious, fraudulent, counterfeit, or otherwise unlawfully issued identification document for the purpose of benefiting, promoting, or furthering the interests of a criminal gang commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

Louisiana (view all subjects for this state)

Louisiana § 15:1405.2. Possession of Firearms, Ammunition, and Dangerous Weapons by Criminal Street Gangs; Forfeiture

A. Any firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon in the possession of a member of a criminal street gang as defined by R.S. 15:1404, may be seized by any law enforcement agency or peace officer, when the law enforcement agency or peace officer reasonably believes that the firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon is or will be used in the commission of a pattern of criminal gang activity.

B. The district attorney shall initiate, in a civil action, forfeiture proceedings by petition in the district courts as to any property seized pursuant to the provisions of this Section within ninety days of seizure. The district attorney shall provide notice of the filing of the petition to those members of the gang who become known to law enforcement officials as a result of the seizure and any related arrests, and to any person learned by law enforcement officials to be the owner of any property involved. After initial notice of the filing of the petition, the court shall assure that all persons so notified continue to receive notice of all subsequent proceedings related to the property.

C. Any person who claims an interest in any seized property shall, in order to assert a claim that the property should not be forfeited, file a notice with the court, without necessity of paying costs, of the intent to establish either of the following:

(1) That the persons asserting the claim did not know, and could not have known of its use in the commission of a pattern of criminal gang activity.

(2) That the law enforcement officer lacked the requisite reasonable belief that the property was or would be used in the commission of a pattern of criminal gang activity.

Minnesota (view all subjects for this state)

Minnesota § 609.5318. Forfeiture of Vehicles Used in Drive-By Shootings

Subdivision 1. Motor vehicles subject to forfeiture.

(a) A motor vehicle is subject to forfeiture under this section if the prosecuting authority establishes by clear and convincing evidence that the vehicle was used in a violation of section 609.66, subdivision 1e. The prosecuting authority need not establish that any individual was convicted of the violation, but a conviction of the owner for a violation of section 609.66, subdivision 1e, creates a presumption that the vehicle was used in the violation.

(b) The Department of Corrections Fugitive Apprehension Unit shall not seize a motor vehicle for the purposes of forfeiture under paragraph (a).

Subd. 2. Notice.

(a) The registered owner of the vehicle must be notified of the seizure and intent to forfeit the vehicle within seven days after the seizure. Notice by certified mail to the address shown in Department of Public Safety records is deemed to be sufficient notice to the registered owner.

(b) The notice must be in writing and:

(1) contain a description of the property seized;

(2) contain the date of seizure; and

(3) be printed in English. This requirement does not preclude the appropriate agency from printing the notice in other languages in addition to English.

(c) Substantially, the following language must appear conspicuously in the notice:

"WARNING: You will automatically lose the above-described property and the right to be heard in court if you do not file a lawsuit and serve the prosecuting authority within 60 days. You may file your lawsuit in conciliation court if the property is worth $15,000 or less; otherwise, you must file in district court. You may not have to pay a filing fee for your lawsuit if you are unable to afford the fee. You do not have to pay a conciliation court fee if your property is worth less than $500."

EFFECTIVE DATE. This section is effective August 1, 2012, and applies to forfeitures initiated on or after that date.

Subd. 3. Hearing.

(a) Within 60 days following service of a notice of seizure and forfeiture, a claimant may demand a judicial determination of the forfeiture. If a related criminal proceeding is pending, the 60-day period begins to run at the conclusion of those proceedings.

(b)The demand must be in the form of a civil complaint as provided in section 609.5314, subdivision 3, except as otherwise provided in this section.

(c) If the claimant makes a timely demand for judicial determination under this subdivision, the appropriate agency must conduct the forfeiture under subdivision 4.

Subd. 4. Procedure.

(a) If a judicial determination of the forfeiture is requested, a separate complaint must be filed against the vehicle, stating the specific act giving rise to the forfeiture and the date, time, and place of the act. The action must be captioned in the name of the prosecuting authority or the prosecuting authority's designee as plaintiff and the property as defendant.

(b) If a demand for judicial determination of an administrative forfeiture is filed and the court orders the return of the seized property, the court shall order that filing fees be reimbursed to the person who filed the demand. In addition, the court may order the payment of reasonable costs, expenses, attorney fees, and towing and storage fees. If the court orders payment of these costs, they must be paid from forfeited money or proceeds from the sale of forfeited property from the appropriate law enforcement and prosecuting agencies in the same proportion as they would be distributed under section 609.5315, subdivision 5.

Subd. 5. Limitations.

(a) A vehicle used by a person as a common carrier in the transaction of business as a common carrier is subject to forfeiture under this section only if the owner is a consenting party to, or is privy to, the commission of the act giving rise to the forfeiture.

(b) A vehicle is subject to forfeiture under this section only if the registered owner was privy to the act upon which the forfeiture is based, the act occurred with the owner's knowledge or consent, or the act occurred due to the owner's gross negligence in allowing another to use the vehicle.

(c) A vehicle encumbered by a bona fide security interest is subject to the interest of the secured party unless the party had knowledge of or consented to the act upon which the forfeiture is based. A person claiming a security interest bears the burden of establishing that interest by clear and convincing evidence.

Mississippi (view all subjects for this state)

Mississippi § 97-3-110. Seizure and Forfeiture of Firearms and Motor Vehicles; Unlawful Possession and Drive-By Shootings or Bombings by Minors

(1) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age is unlawfully in possession of a firearm, the firearm shall be seized and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, shall be subject to forfeiture.

(2) Whenever a person under eighteen (18) years of age unlawfully discharges a firearm in or throws or ejects a bomb from a motor vehicle in violation of Section 97-3-109, Mississippi Code of 1972, the motor vehicle shall be subject to seizure and, after an adjudication of delinquency or conviction, be subject to forfeiture pursuant to the procedures set forth in Section 97-3-111, Mississippi Code of 1972.

Mississippi § 97-3-111. Forfeiture of Vehicles Used in Drive-By Shootings or Bombings; Procedure

(1) All vehicles which are used in any manner to facilitate the discharging of a firearm or the throwing or ejection of a bomb or explosive device in violation of Section 97-3-109 shall be subject to forfeiture, however:

(a) No conveyance used by any person as a common carrier in the transaction of business as a common carrier is subject to forfeiture under this section unless it appears that the owner or other person in charge of the conveyance is a consenting party or privy to a violation of Sections 97-3-109 and 97-3-111;

(b) No conveyance is subject to forfeiture under this section by reason of any act or omission proved by the owner thereof to have been committed or omitted without his knowledge or consent; if the confiscating authority has reason to believe that the conveyance is a leased or rented conveyance, then the confiscating authority shall notify the owner of the conveyance within five (5) days of the confiscation;

(c) A forfeiture of a conveyance encumbered by a bona fide security interest is subject to the interest of the secured party of he neither had knowledge or nor consented to the act or omission.

Mississippi § 97-44-17. Forfeiture of Firearms, Ammunition, and Dangerous Weapons Used by Criminal Street Gangs; Disposition of Property Seized; Procedure.

(1) Any firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon in the possession of a member of a criminal street gang may be seized by any law enforcement agency or peace officer when the law enforcement agency or peace officer has probable cause to believe that the firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon is or has been used by a gang in the commission of illegal activity.

(2) The district attorney or an attorney for the seizing agency shall initiate, in a civil action, forfeiture proceedings by petition in the circuit courts as to any property seized pursuant to the provisions of this section within thirty (30) days of seizure. The district attorney shall provide notice of the filing of the petition to those members of the gang who become known to law enforcement officials as a result of the seizure and any related arrests, and to any person determined by law enforcement officials to be the owner of any of the property involved. After initial notice of the filing of the petition, the court shall assure that all persons so notified continue to receive notice of all subsequent proceedings related to the property.

(3) Any person who claims an interest in any seized property shall, in order to assert a claim that the property should not be forfeited, file a notice with the court, without necessity of paying costs, of the intent to establish either of the following:

(a) That the persons asserting the claim did not know of, could not have known of, or had no reason to believe in its use by a gang in the commission of illegal activity; or

(b) That the law enforcement officer lacked the requisite reasonable belief that the property was or had been used by a gang in the commission of illegal activity.

(4) An acquittal or dismissal in a criminal proceeding shall not preclude civil proceedings under this section; however, for good cause shown, on motion by the district attorney, the court may stay civil forfeiture proceedings during the criminal trial for related criminal indictment or information alleging a violation of this section. Such a stay shall not be available pending an appeal.

(5) Except as otherwise provided by this section, all proceedings hereunder shall be governed by the provisions of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure.

(6) The issue shall be determined by the court alone, and the hearing on the claim shall be held within sixty (60) days after service of the petition unless continued for good cause. The district attorney shall have the burden of showing by clear and convincing proof that forfeiture of the property is appropriate.

(7) Any person who asserts a successful claim in accordance with subsection (3) of this section shall be awarded the seized property by the court, together with costs of filing such action. All property as to which no claim is filed, or as to which no successful claim is made, may be destroyed, sold at a public sale, retained for use by the seizing agency or transferred without charge to any law enforcement agency of the state for use by it. Property that is sold shall be sold by the circuit court at a public auction for cash to the highest and best bidder after advertising the sale for at least once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks, the last notice to appear not more than ten (10) days nor less than five (5) days prior to such sale in a newspaper having a general circulation in the county. Such notice shall contain a description of the property to be sold and a statement of the time and place of sale. It shall not be necessary to the validity of such sale either to have the property present at the place of sale or to have the name of the owner thereof stated in such notice. The proceeds of the sale, less any expenses of concluding the sale, shall be deposited in the seizing agency’s general fund to be used only for approved law enforcement activity affecting the agency’s efforts to combat gang activities.

(8) Any action under the provisions of this section may be consolidated with any other action or proceedings pursuant to this section relating to the same property on motion of the district attorney.

Nevada (view all subjects for this state)

Nevada § 179.121. Forfeiture of Personal Property and Conveyances Used in Commission of Crime

1. All personal property, including, without limitation, any tool, substance, weapon, machine, computer, money or security, which is used as an instrumentality in any of the following crimes, is subject to forfeiture:

(d) The commission of any crime by a criminal gang, as defined in NRS 213.1263.

New Mexico (view all subjects for this state)

New Mexico § 30-3-8.1. Seizure and Forfeiture of Motor Vehicle; Procedure

A. A motor vehicle shall be subject to seizure and forfeiture when the vehicle is used or intended for use in the commission of the offense of shooting at or from a motor vehicle pursuant to Subsection B of Section 30-3-8 NMSA 1978.

B. The provisions of the Forfeiture Act [31-27-1 NMSA 1978] apply to the seizure, forfeiture and disposal of a motor vehicle subject to forfeiture pursuant to Subsection A of this section.

North Carolina (view all subjects for this state)

North Carolina § 14-50.23. Contraband, Seizure, and Forfeiture

(a) All property of every kind used or intended for use in the course of, derived from, or realized through criminal street gang activity or a pattern of criminal street gang activity is subject to the seizure and forfeiture provisions of G.S. 14-2.3.

(b) In any action under this section, the court may enter a restraining order in connection with any interest that is subject to forfeiture.

(c) Innocent Activities.—The provisions of this section shall not apply to property used for criminal street gang activity where the owner or person who has legal possession of the property does not have actual knowledge that the property is being used for criminal street gang activity.

Ohio (view all subjects for this state)

Ohio § 2923.44. Proceeds of Crimes; Disposition of Fines Collected

(A) If a person is convicted of or pleads guilty to a violation of section 2923.42 of the Revised Code, or a juvenile is found by a juvenile court to be a delinquent child for an act that is a violation of section 2923.42 of the Revised Code, and derives profits or other proceeds from the offense or act, the court that imposes sentence or an order of disposition upon the offender or delinquent child, in lieu of any fine that the court is otherwise authorized or required to impose, may impose upon the offender or delinquent child a fine of not more than twice the gross profits or other proceeds so derived.

(B) Notwithstanding any contrary provision of the Revised Code, the clerk of the court shall pay all fines imposed pursuant to this section to the county, municipal corporation, township, park district created pursuant to section 511.18 or 1545.01 of the Revised Code, or state law enforcement agencies in this state that were primarily responsible for or involved in making the arrest of, and in prosecuting, the offender. However, the clerk shall not pay a fine so imposed to a law enforcement agency unless the agency has adopted a written internal control policy pursuant to division (C)(2) of section 2923.42 of the Revised Code that addresses the use of the fine moneys that it receives under this section and division (C)(1) of section 2923.42 of the Revised Code. The law enforcement agencies shall use the fines imposed and paid pursuant to this section to subsidize their efforts pertaining to criminal gangs, in accordance with the written internal control policy adopted by the recipient agency pursuant to division (C)(2) of section 2923.42 of the Revised Code.

South Carolina (view all subjects for this state)

South Carolina § 16-8-260. Seizure of Firearms, Ammunition, Electronic Records, Money, Etc.; Forfeiture Actions.

(A)(1) Any firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon in the possession of a member of a criminal gang may be seized by a law enforcement officer or agency when the law enforcement officer or agency reasonably believes that the firearm, ammunition to be used in a firearm, or dangerous weapon is or has been used in a pattern of criminal gang activity or in the commission of a criminal act for the purpose of benefiting, promoting, or furthering the interests of a criminal gang.

(2) Any written or electronic communications, records, money, negotiable instruments, or valuables may be seized by a law enforcement officer or agency when the law enforcement officer or agency reasonably believes that the written or electronic communications, records, money, negotiable instruments, or valuables have been used in a pattern of criminal gang activity or have been used for the purpose of benefiting, promoting, or furthering the interests of a criminal gang.

(3) Any contraband, as defined in Section 16-8-230, or other asset owned or titled in the name of the gang or an individual gang member may be seized by a law enforcement officer or agency when the law enforcement officer or agency reasonably believes that the contraband or asset has been used in a pattern of criminal gang activity or has been used for the purpose of benefiting, promoting, or furthering the interests of a criminal gang.

(B) The solicitor or another prosecuting attorney shall initiate, in a civil action, forfeiture proceedings by petition in a court of competent jurisdiction regarding any property seized pursuant to the provisions of this section within ninety days of seizure. The solicitor or another prosecuting attorney must provide notice of the filing of the petition to those criminal gang members who become known to law enforcement officials as a result of the seizure and any related arrests, and to any person learned by law enforcement officials to be the owner of any of the property involved. After initial notice of the filing of the petition, the court must ensure that all persons so notified continue to receive notice of all subsequent proceedings related to the property.

(C) A person who claims an interest in any seized property, in order to assert a claim that the property should not be forfeited, must file a notice with the court, without the necessity of paying costs, of the intent to establish either of the following:

(1) That the person asserting the claim did not know and could not have known of the property's use in the commission of a pattern of criminal gang activity or in furthering the interests of the criminal gang; or

(2) That the law enforcement officer lacked the requisite reasonable belief that the property was or would be used in the commission of a pattern of criminal gang activity or in furtherance of the interests of the criminal gang.

(D) In any hearings held and determinations made, pursuant to this section, the court may receive and consider, in making a determination of reasonable cause, all evidence admissible in determining reasonable or probable cause at a preliminary hearing together with inferences arising from the evidence presented.

(E) An acquittal or dismissal in a criminal proceeding must not preclude civil proceedings under this section. However, for good cause shown, on motion by the solicitor or another prosecuting attorney, the court may stay civil forfeiture proceedings during the criminal trial for a related criminal indictment or information alleging a violation of this section. A stay is not available pending an appeal.

(F) Except as otherwise provided by this section, all proceedings under this section are governed according to the common law, by statutory provisions relating to civil remedies and procedures, and the rules of civil procedure established for the circuit court. Additionally, any action under the provisions of this section may be consolidated with any other action or proceeding pursuant to this section relating to the same property on motion of the solicitor or prosecuting attorney.

(G) The forfeiture provided for in this section must be decided by the court. The hearing on the claim must be held within sixty days after service of the petition, unless continued for good cause. The solicitor or prosecuting attorney has the burden of proof to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the property is subject to forfeiture.

(H) A person who asserts a successful claim in accordance with subsection (C) must be awarded the seized property by the court. All property to which no claim is filed, or to which no successful claim is made may be destroyed, sold at a public or private sale, retained for use by the seizing agency, or transferred without charge to any law enforcement agency of the state for use by the agency.

Tennessee (view all subjects for this state)

Tennessee § 29-3-101. Definitions; Forfeitures

(a) As used herein:

(2) "Nuisance" means that which is declared to be a nuisance by other statutes, and, in addition, means:

(B) A criminal gang, as defined by § 40-35-121(a), that regularly engages in gang related conduct. "Gang related conduct" occurs when one (1) or more criminal gang member or members, as defined by § 40-35-121(a), regularly engages in the following:

(i) Intimidating, harassing, threatening, stalking, provoking or assaulting any person;

(ii) Possessing weapons prohibited under §§ 39-17-1302 and 39-17-1307, knowingly remaining in the presence of anyone who is in possession of such weapons, or knowingly remaining in the presence of such weapons;

(iii) Unlawfully damaging, defacing or marking any public or private property of another or possessing tools for the purpose of unlawfully damaging, defacing or marking any public or private property of another;

(iv) Selling, possessing, manufacturing or using any controlled substance, drug paraphernalia, as defined in § 39-17-402, or controlled substance analogue, as defined in § 39-17-454, knowingly remaining in the presence of anyone selling, possessing, manufacturing or using any controlled substance, controlled substance analogue or drug paraphernalia, knowingly remaining in the presence of any controlled substance, controlled substance analogue or drug paraphernalia, driving under the influence of any controlled substance or controlled substance analogue in violation of § 55-10-401, or being under the influence of any controlled substance or controlled substance analogue in public in violation of § 39-17-310;

(v) Using, consuming, possessing or purchasing alcoholic beverages unlawfully, including, but not limited to, public intoxication in violation of § 39-17-310 or driving under the influence of alcohol in violation of § 55-10-401;

(vi) Criminal trespassing in violation of § 39-14-405;

(vii) Taking any action to recruit gang members or making any threats or promises to shoot, stab, strike, hit, assault, injure, disturb the peace or destroy the personal property of anyone as an incentive to join a gang; or

(viii) Taking any action to stop a gang member from leaving a gang or making any threats or promises to shoot, stab, strike, hit, assault, injure, disturb the peace or destroy the personal property of anyone as an incentive not to leave a gang;

(ix) Engaging in a criminal gang offense as defined by § 40-35-121(a);

(x) Disorderly conduct in violation of § 39-17-305; or

(xi) Contributing to or encouraging the delinquency or unruly behavior of a minor in violation of § 37-1-156;

(3) "Person" means and includes any individual, corporation, association, partnership, trustee, lessee, agent or assignee; and

(4) "Place" means and includes any building, room enclosure or vehicle, or separate part or portion thereof or the ground itself and all the property on which the nuisance is located that is under the ownership, management or control of the violator.

(b) Any person who uses, occupies, establishes or conducts a nuisance, or aids or abets therein, and the owner, agent or lessee of any interest in any such nuisance, together with the persons employed in or in control of any such nuisance by any such owner, agent or lessee, is guilty of maintaining a nuisance and such nuisance shall be abated as provided hereinafter.

(c) All motor vehicles, furnishings, fixtures, equipment, moneys and stock, used in or in connection with the maintaining or conducting of a nuisance, are subject to seizure, immediately upon detection by any law enforcement officer and are subject to forfeiture to the state by order of a court having jurisdiction upon application by any of the officers or persons authorized by § 29-3-102, to bring action for the abatement of such nuisance; provided, that seizure for the possession of obscene matter shall be in accordance with §§ 39-17-901—39-17-908 and seizure for violations of §§ 39-17-1003—39-17-1005 shall be in accordance with §§ 39-17-1006 and 39-17-1007. Any property so forfeited shall be disposed of by public auction or as otherwise provided by law.

(d) All moneys from such forfeiture and all proceeds realized from the enforcement of this section shall be paid equally into the general funds of the state and the general funds of the political subdivision or other public agency, if any, whose officers made the seizure, except as otherwise provided by law.

Virginia (view all subjects for this state)

Virginia § 18.2-46.3:2. Forfeiture

All property, both personal and real, of any kind or character used in substantial connection with, intended for use in the course of, derived from, traceable to, or realized through, including any profit or interest derived from, any conduct in violation of any provision of this article is subject to civil forfeiture to the Commonwealth. Further, all property, both personal and real, of any kind or character used or intended to be used in substantial connection with, during the course of, derived from, traceable to, or realized through, including any profit or interest derived from, criminal street gang member recruitment as prohibited under § 18.2-46.3 is subject to civil forfeiture to the Commonwealth. The forfeiture proceeding shall utilize the provisions of Chapter 22.1 (§ 19.2-386.1 et seq.) of Title 19.2 and the procedures specified therein shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to all forfeitures under this article. The application of one civil remedy under the article does not preclude the application of any other remedy, civil or criminal, under this article or any other provision of the Code.


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