1st Unofficial Engrossment - 81st Legislature (1999 - 2000) Posted on 12/15/2009 12:00am
1.1 A bill for an act 1.2 relating to natural resources; providing for seizure 1.3 and administrative forfeiture of certain firearms and 1.4 abandoned property; modifying authority to issue 1.5 trespass citations; modifying provisions for forfeited 1.6 vehicles used for fleeing a peace officer; requiring 1.7 assessment of gross violations; providing civil 1.8 penalties; amending Minnesota Statutes 1998, sections 1.9 97B.002, subdivision 1; and 609.5312, subdivision 4; 1.10 proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, 1.11 chapter 97A. 1.12 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 1.13 Section 1. [97A.223] [SEIZURE AND ADMINISTRATIVE 1.14 FORFEITURE OF CERTAIN FIREARMS AND ABANDONED PROPERTY.] 1.15 Subdivision 1. [PROPERTY SUBJECT TO SEIZURE AND 1.16 FORFEITURE.] (a) An enforcement officer must seize: 1.17 (1) firearms possessed in violation of state or federal law 1.18 or court order; and 1.19 (2) property described in section 97A.221, subdivision 1, 1.20 where no owner can be determined. 1.21 (b) Property seized under this section is subject to 1.22 administrative forfeiture. 1.23 Subd. 2. [NOTICE OF SEIZURE AND INTENT TO FORFEIT.] When 1.24 property is seized under subdivision 1, the enforcement officer 1.25 shall serve any known owner and person possessing the property 1.26 with a notice of the seizure and intent to forfeit the 1.27 property. The notice must be in writing, describing the 1.28 property seized, the date of seizure, and notice of the right to 2.1 appeal the seizure and forfeiture as described in subdivision 3. 2.2 Subd. 3. [APPEAL; FINAL ORDER.] Seizure and administrative 2.3 forfeiture of property under this section may be appealed under 2.4 the procedures in section 116.072, subdivision 6, if the owner 2.5 or other person from whom the property was seized requests a 2.6 hearing by notifying the commissioner in writing within 45 days 2.7 after seizure of the property. If a hearing is not requested 2.8 within 45 days of seizure, the forfeiture becomes a final order 2.9 and not subject to further review. 2.10 Subd. 4. [OTHER REMEDIES.] The authority to forfeit 2.11 firearms and other property under this section is in addition to 2.12 other remedies available under state and federal law. 2.13 Subd. 5. [DISPOSAL OF FORFEITED PROPERTY.] Forfeited 2.14 property under this section may be disposed of as contraband 2.15 according to section 97A.221, subdivision 4. 2.16 Sec. 2. Minnesota Statutes 1998, section 97B.002, 2.17 subdivision 1, is amended to read: 2.18 Subdivision 1. [AUTHORITY TO ISSUE.] Conservation 2.19 officers, sheriffs, and deputies may issue citations to a person 2.20 who trespasses in violation of section 84.90 or 97B.001 or 2.21 removes a sign posted to prevent trespass without permission of 2.22 the owner of the property. 2.23 Sec. 3. Minnesota Statutes 1998, section 609.5312, 2.24 subdivision 4, is amended to read: 2.25 Subd. 4. [VEHICLE FORFEITURE FOR FLEEING A PEACE OFFICER.] 2.26 (a) A motor vehicle is subject to forfeiture under this 2.27 subdivision if it was used to commit a violation of section 2.28 609.487 and endanger life or property. A motor vehicle is 2.29 subject to forfeiture under this subdivision only if the offense 2.30 is established by proof of a criminal conviction for the 2.31 offense. Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, a 2.32 forfeiture under this subdivision is governed by sections 2.33 609.531, 609.5312, 609.5313, and 609.5315, subdivision 6. 2.34 (b) When a motor vehicle subject to forfeiture under this 2.35 subdivision is seized in advance of a judicial forfeiture order, 2.36 a hearing before a judge or referee must be held within 96 hours 3.1 of the seizure. Notice of the hearing must be given to the 3.2 registered owner within 48 hours of the seizure. The 3.3 prosecuting authority shall certify to the court, at or in 3.4 advance of the hearing, that it has filed or intends to file 3.5 charges against the alleged violator for violating section 3.6 609.487. After conducting the hearing, the court shall order 3.7 that the motor vehicle be returned to the owner if: 3.8 (1) the prosecutor has failed to make the certification 3.9 required by this paragraph; 3.10 (2) the owner of the motor vehicle has demonstrated to the 3.11 court's satisfaction that the owner has a defense to the 3.12 forfeiture, including but not limited to the defenses contained 3.13 in subdivision 2; or 3.14 (3) the court determines that seizure of the vehicle 3.15 creates or would create an undue hardship for members of the 3.16 owner's family. 3.17 (c) If the defendant is acquitted or the charges against 3.18 the defendant are dismissed, neither the owner nor the defendant 3.19 is responsible for paying any costs associated with the seizure 3.20 or storage of the vehicle. 3.21 (d) A vehicle leased or rented under section 168.27, 3.22 subdivision 4, for a period of 180 days or less is not subject 3.23 to forfeiture under this subdivision. 3.24 (e) A motor vehicle that is an off-road recreational 3.25 vehicle as defined in section 169.01, subdivision 86, or a 3.26 motorboat as defined in section 169.01, subdivision 87, is not 3.27 subject to the notice provisions of paragraph (b). 3.28 Sec. 4. [ASSESSING GROSS VIOLATIONS.] 3.29 The commissioner must review and assess gross violations of 3.30 taking game and fish resources. A report on increased penalties 3.31 for gross violations must be completed by the commissioner by 3.32 February 1, 2001, and delivered to the house and senate 3.33 committees on natural resources policy and finance. 3.34 Sec. 5. [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 3.35 Sections 1 to 4 are effective the day following final 3.36 enactment.