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United States v. Bethea

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA


July 6, 2006

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
KEVIN LAMARR BETHEA

The opinion of the court was delivered by: (Judge Conner)

ORDER

AND NOW, this 6th day of July, 2006, upon consideration of defendant's motions (Docs. 34, 45) for the return of property seized by the government,*fn1 see FED. R. CRIM P. 41(g) ("A person aggrieved by the unlawful search and seizure of property or by the deprivation of property may move for the property's return."); see also United States v. Bein, 214 F.3d 408, 411 (3d Cir. 2000) ("[T]he Government may seize evidence for use in an investigation and trial, but . . . it must return the property once criminal proceedings have concluded, unless it is contraband or subject to forfeiture."), and for an order to show cause why the motion should not be granted, and the court finding that evidence of record demonstrates that notice of the seizure and intent to forfeit was sent to defendant's home and to defendant's attorney, and published in the Wall Street Journal (see Doc. 42), see 19 U.S.C. § 1607 (setting forth notice procedures for forfeiture actions); see also 18 U.S.C. § 981(d); 21 C.F.R. § 1316.77, that neither defendant nor anyone else claimed the property, (see Doc. 42), and that the property has been forfeited to the United States or destroyed in accordance with law,*fn2 (see Docs. 40, 41, 42), see also United States v. Chambers, 192 F.3d 374, 377 (3d Cir. 1999) (stating that the government may demonstrate a "legitimate reason to retain the property" by demonstrating a "cognizable claim of ownership or possession adverse to that of the movant"), 19 U.S.C. § 1609(b) ("A declaration of forfeiture . . . . vest[s the forfeited property] in the United States free and clear of any liens or encumbrances . . . ."), it is hereby ORDERED that the motions (Doc. 34, 45) for return of property and for an order to show cause are DENIED.

CHRISTOPHER C. CONNER United States District Judge


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