United States v. $35,651.11 -- Can the federal government "use civil forfeiture to take your money when you have done nothing wrong -- and then pocket the proceeds?" asks the Institute for Justice (IJ). "The IRS thinks so."
"For over 30 years, Terry Dehko has successfully run a grocery store [Schott's Supermarket] in Fraser, Mich., with his daughter Sandy," IJ states. Then, "in January 2013, without warning, the federal government used civil forfeiture to seize all of the money from the Dehkos’ store bank account (more than $35,000) even though they’ve done absolutely nothing wrong. Their American Dream is now a nightmare."
According to IJ, "Federal civil forfeiture law features an appalling lack of due process: It empowers the government to seize private property from Americans without ever charging, let alone convicting, them of a crime. Perversely, the government then pockets the proceeds while providing no prompt way to get a court to review the seizure."
On Sept. 25, 2013, "Terry and Sandy teamed up with the Institute for Justice to fight back in federal court. A victory will vindicate not just their right to be free from abusive forfeiture tactics, but the right of every American not to have their property wrongfully seized by government," IJ concludes.
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