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May 26, 2010

Eighth Circuit affirms big real property forfeiture for child porn offense

I wonder if any of the usual suspects who get riled up about property rights will have any complaints about the intriguing forfeiture ruling from the Eighth Circuit today in US v. Hull, No. 08-4015 (8th Cir. May 26, 2010) (available here).  Here is how the decision in Hull starts:

Larry Richard Hull was convicted of two counts of distribution of child pornography, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2252(a)(1).  The district court ordered forfeiture of Hull’s real property, which consisted of approximately nineteen acres in rural Iowa, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 2253(a)(3).  Hull appeals the forfeiture order, contending that the evidence was insufficient to support forfeiture of the property under § 2253(a)(3).  He also asserts that the district court erred by failing to make adequate findings of fact to determine whether forfeiture was a grossly disproportionate penalty in violation of the Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment.  We affirm.

May 26, 2010 at 12:24 PM | Permalink

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Comments

woah.

That was really troubling to me.

But then, I wonder whether there would be any difference if the court imposed a $200,000 fine, and the government then sought to execute that against the property? that procedure seems a little more decent to me.

I wonder whether the strong presumption of validity of guideline fines in the proportionality analysis is consistent with Rita?

Posted by: Texas Lawyer | May 26, 2010 1:45:05 PM

That was the business model of the Inquisition. "You blasphemed by eating meat on Friday. You must go to the stake. You may avoid that fate by giving over your estates to the Church."

This business scheme worked for 700 years, until the French Revolution. The French beheaded or expelled 10,000 church officials. The church got the message and took its place as moral arbiter rather than law enforcer. This experience points to the remedy for the lawyer gotcha of the productive male. If the defendant used force to produce child porn. He should be executed. However, if he just downloaded material, this is a pretextual confiscation. It may also deprive the victims of this child pornographer from collecting from him in a torts claim.

A list should be started for the participants in this lawyer bunko operation. When the time comes, they should be arrested, have an hour's fair trial, and get shot in the basement of the courthouse, right after the guilty verdict is read. To deter.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | May 26, 2010 6:15:44 PM

Here's a guy who was ACQUITTED of the crimes charged against him but still lost his house to forfeiture:
Com. v. 542 ONTARIO ST., BETHLEHEM, 989 A. 2d 411 - Pa: Commonwealth Court 2010,
and here's another case in Lexington, KY about a child pornographer losing his
house to forfeiture:
Man loses home over child porn
BILL ESTEP [email protected]
A Lexington man will forfeit his house because he downloaded thousands of images of child pornography there over several years, a federal prosecutor announced Wednesday.

It's not unusual for authorities to seize houses and cars used to facilitate drug trafficking, but the forfeiture of Joseph Robert Leitner's house in the Chevy Chase neighborhood might be a first in a child-pornography case in Central and Eastern Kentucky.

Longtime prosecutors in U.S....

Published on 2009-07-02, Page D1, Lexington Herald-Leader (KY)

Posted by: folly | Jun 12, 2010 7:41:26 AM

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