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SCOTUS Limits Criminal Forfeiture in 'Honeycutt'

, New York Law Journal

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Steven L. Kessler writes that with the enactment of the Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act of 2000, Congress sought to steer federal prosecutors to criminal forfeiture over civil, believing that the risk of abuse would be reduced because a criminal conviction is required before a defendant's property can be forfeited. Unfortunately, it turned out that greater reliance on criminal forfeiture increased abuses in that area as well. The Roberts-led Supreme Court hinted at some dissatisfaction with the state of criminal forfeiture law in recent decisions, but the rifle shot came in its June 5 decision in 'Honeycutt v. United States'.

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