An individual convicted of a drug crime not only faces possible jail or prison time, but is also subject to a hearing to determine whether property related to the crime will be seized. In order to avoid losing valuable assets for a drug offense, it is important to hire an experienced and aggressive Sugar Land criminal attorney.
The Law on Asset Forfeiture
Article 59 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure provides for the right of the district attorney's office to file a civil lawsuit for asset forfeiture. Unfortunately for the defendant, the bar is set much lower for this than in a criminal proceeding. The DA merely needs to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that an asset was in some way related to a drug crime. While the burden of proof is still on the DA's Office, your Sugar Land criminal attorney will face a bigger challenge in defending you.
Assets That Can Be Seized
The U.S. Supreme Court allows assets that fall into three categories to be seized for certain criminal offenses. Applied to drug cases, these include:
- Property that is illegal to own, such as certain drugs
- Property that was used in order to commit the crime, such as a car, boat, etc.
- Property that was purchased with money received in a drug sale
While cash, money in bank accounts, and vehicles are common assets seized under state and federal law, it should be evident that almost anything is subject to seizure if the DA can show that it likely came into the possession of the defendant through drug sales.
For Legal Assistance
If you are facing drug charges, Sugar Land criminal attorney John Venza may be able to help. Call to arrange a consultation today at 281-971-5660.