Wisconsin Statutes Controlled Substances (Ch. 961) § 961.555. Forfeiture proceedings




(1) Type of action;  where brought.  In an action brought to cause the forfeiture of any property seized under s. 961.55, the court may render a judgment in rem or against a party personally, or both.  The circuit court for the county in which the property was seized shall have jurisdiction over any proceedings regarding the property when the action is commenced in state court.  Any property seized may be the subject of a federal forfeiture action.

(2) Commencement.  (a) The district attorney of the county within which the property was seized shall commence the forfeiture action within 30 days after the seizure of the property, except that the defendant may request that the forfeiture proceedings be adjourned until after adjudication of any charge concerning a crime which was the basis for the seizure of the property.  The request shall be granted.  The forfeiture action shall be commenced by filing a summons, complaint and affidavit of the person who seized the property with the clerk of circuit court, provided service of authenticated copies of those papers is made in accordance with ch. 801 within 90 days after filing upon the person from whom the property was seized and upon any person known to have a bona fide perfected security interest in the property.

(b) Upon service of an answer, the action shall be set for hearing within 60 days of the service of the answer but may be continued for cause or upon stipulation of the parties.

(c) In counties having a population of 500,000 or more, the district attorney or corporation counsel may proceed under par. (a).

(d) If no answer is served or no issue of law or fact has been joined and the time for that service or joining issue has expired, or if any defendant fails to appear at trial after answering or joining issue, the court may render a default judgment as provided in s. 806.02.

(3) Burden of proof.  The state shall have the burden of satisfying or convincing to a reasonable certainty by the greater weight of the credible evidence that the property is subject to forfeiture under s. 961.55.

(4) Action against other property of the person.  The court may order the forfeiture of any other property of a defendant up to the value of property found by the court to be subject to forfeiture under s. 961.55 if the property subject to forfeiture meets any of the following conditions:

(a) Cannot be located.

(b) Has been transferred or conveyed to, sold to or deposited with a 3rd party.

(c) Is beyond the jurisdiction of the court.

(d) Has been substantially diminished in value while not in the actual physical custody of the law enforcement agency.

(e) Has been commingled with other property that cannot be divided without difficulty.


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