Facing any type of criminal charge is a serious matter that has the potential to severely impact your life, regardless of whether or not you are convicted of the charge. Simply spending a night in jail or being brought up on charges can have an adverse effect on your reputation within the community, and paying a bail bond, fines, or legal defense fees can quickly become a financial burden. Depending on the type of crime with which you are charged, you may also be subject to asset forfeiture. This means that the state may take money, freeze your accounts, or seize personal property that they claim is associated with the crime you have been accused of committing.
At Sabuco, Beck, Hansen, Massino & Pollack, P.C., our experienced Illinois criminal defense attorneys understand the serious economic impacts that can occur as the result of having your assets or property seized. Property seizure and asset forfeiture do not only happen to serious career criminals and drug kingpins, but also to otherwise good people who have been caught in difficult circumstances. Once the state or federal government has seized your property, it can be an uphill battle to get it back again, even if your charges are dropped.
Under the Illinois Compiled Statutes (725 ILCS 150/2), your money or property may be seized if it is determined that it was gained from or in any way associated with illegal drug activity, or facilitated the manufacture, sales, distribution, use or possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia.
Under the Illinois Drug Asset Forfeiture Procedure Act, your assets may be seized prior to conviction of any drug activity. Once the police or government authority seizes your property, a preliminary hearing is held within 14 days to determine if there was probable cause for making the seizure. The usual rules of evidence do not apply at this hearing, and a judge can order that your property be held based simply on the basis of the criminal charges that were filed against you. The following types of property and assets may be seized:
You may file a claim for the return of your property within 45 days of having your property seized. You are required to pay a 10 percent deposit of the total amount of the seized property to the clerk of court, as well as court costs associated with the proceedings.
According to the Illinois Policy Institute, an independent government watchdog group, law enforcement took in more than $5 billion as the result of asset forfeiture in 2014. The group claims that millions of dollars’ worth of cash and assets are taken in each year in Illinois with little to no government oversight, and that there is little recourse for the people who have their property seized. While criminal forfeiture requires charges to be filed and, in certain cases, a conviction to be made, civil asset forfeiture allows the police to seize property of people allegedly involved in criminal activity regardless of whether or not they have been charged. Police departments are then allowed to use the money and property from these seizures however they wish, making asset forfeiture a profitable way to increase funds.
If you are facing charges in a criminal matter, you need aggressive legal representation to ensure your rights are protected and that law enforcement does not seize your hard-earned assets or property. At Sabuco, Beck, Hansen, Massino & Pollack, our team of experienced Will County criminal defense attorneys have the knowledge you need to handle your case. We provide you with the hard-hitting legal defense that gets results. With offices throughout Will County and the surrounding area, call Sabuco, Beck, Hansen, Massino & Pollack, P.C. today at (815) 730-8860 for an initial consultation.
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Attorney Michael Massino made me feel so relaxed. I really appreciate all he did for me.
I was represented by your firm in the above referenced matter. I received a letter in the mail seeking my feedback as it related to the services I received. I am happy to take a moment to respond. In all areas I would rate the firm with all 5’s (excellent). The attorney that represented me was Alex Beck. Alex was so easy to talk to, communication was always open, with the steps and processes clearly laid out and understandable to me. Alex is just a very likable great guy, while at the same time being a very knowledgeable professional in his discipline. I have already in the past ,and will continue to in the future, refer your law firm to friends and family. I’d also like to say Donna was of tremendous help and was an absolute pleasure to be assisted by. Thank you, James Nichols
950 Essington Road Suite B
Joliet, IL 60435
Phone : (815) 730-8860
Fax : (815) 730-8865
500 Bob Blair Rd Minooka,
Phone : (815) 467-0270
Fax : (815) 467-0271
405 N. Liberty Street PO Box 568
Morris, IL 60450
Phone : (815) 942-6210
Fax : (815) 942-6238
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