Thursday, November 29, 2018

8th Amendment forfeiture case goes to SCOTUS

Supreme Court could limit the travesty of civil asset forfeiture - Tiana Low, Washington Examiner:

November 28, 2018 - "At long last, the Supreme Court may take action to limit civil forfeiture, if the questioning by various justices in today's case — including Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Brett Kavanaugh, and Neil Gorsuch — is any indication. Although one can only learn so much from the questions justices ask, today's oral arguments strongly indicate that justices will apply the Excessive Fines Clause of the Bill of Rights to cities and states, ending some of the worst abuses of civil asset forfeiture....

"The state of Indiana required Tyson Timbs, a man convicted on minor drug charges, to forfeit his car, a 2012 Land Rover, which he had purchased for $42,000 from the proceeds of a life insurance policy. Indiana law dictates that the maximum fine for the crime, selling heroin to undercover officers, is $10,000, just a quarter of the value of the car.

"Justice Clarence Thomas summed up the awful practice of civil asset forfeiture best when he cited a book entitled Policing for Profit....

"SCOTUS's impending ruling is frankly overdue. As Gorsuch noted in his questioning today, 'Most of the incorporation cases took place in like the 1940s. And here we are in 2018 still litigating incorporation of the Bill of Rights.'

"If the court finally forces the states' hands, it will end the worst excesses of civil asset forfeiture. Over 100 years ago, SCOTUS ruled that excessive fines are those 'so grossly excessive as to amount to a deprivation of property without due process of law'....

"After Indiana's solicitor general tried to argue that the Excessive Fines Clause doesn't apply to the states, 'Gorsuch then told the Indiana SG that he was going to lose, and if he kept arguing the merits, he’d lose even worse,' according to Slate's Mark Joseph Stern."

Read more:
'via Blog this'

No comments:

Post a Comment