Forfeiture Endangers American Rights Foundation
s a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Donations are tax deductible.
20 Sunnyside Suite A-419, Mill Valley, CA 94941     Phone: 415-389-8551  or toll-free  888-FEAR-001

Forfeiture Victim Self-Help Materials

Warning: the material located on other websites is not verified by FEAR.  User discretion is warranted.  Additionally, the law may have changed since some of the publications below were written.

Please send us any links or materials you have that might be useful in updating this information. Mail hard copies, or diskettes or CD-Roms containing data copies to F.E.A.R. Foundation, 20 Sunnyside Suite A-419, Mill Valley, CA 94941.  Sorry - due to the virus epidemic we do not open attached files from strangers.

Issues specific to Property Seizure and Forfeiture

FEAR's classic trifold pamphlet "What to Do When Your Property Has Been Seized" is now a web page with links to other important self-help materials.  This updated tri-fold pamphlet is also available in PDF formatUpdated with CAFRA procedures.  Please make copies and give away this tri-fold flyer in criminal. defense law offices, public defender offices, legal aid programs, and where ever forfeiture victims might turn for assistance, by Brenda Grantland, Esq. (2004) (a brief, simple overview of the civil forfeiture process which answers the questions forfeiture victims most frequently ask).

New Ebook: What to Do When Police Seize Your Property (only $5.99 from Smashwords.com) by Brenda Grantland and Judy Osburn, explains in detail the federal forfeiture process – civil and criminal. It tells how to qualify for a court-appointed attorney, and what to do if you are forced to represent yourself. The book is outlined in a simple question and answer format, with citations to statutes and cases, including links to FEAR's law library and other free internet resources for legal research. It includes a link to a step-by-step video which explains how to prepare a Claim and Answer.

Federal Forfeiture Law And Procedure
by Brenda Grantland, Esq. (1992) (an in-depth law review article about civil forfeiture law and procedure in the District of Columbia and federal courts; although not up to date with the latest constitutional defenses, it's a good starting point for research, and has citations to numerous cases.)

General Legal Issues

"A Citizen's Guide To Interacting With The Police"

For those of you who really need legal help but don't quite have the necessary funds, see our page Resources for Legal Help to the Indigent.

The folks at Redress, Inc. have provided a resource page on "PRO SE INFORMATION" with links to many useful web sites, including "pro bono" information as well as "pro se" help. If you need help and it appears that the only person who will help is yourself, check out this site!

The "Civil Forfeiture Research Pathfinder" contains some good stuff on how to research forfeiture statutes, legislation, cases, articles, etc. as well as some specific reference material that the author found doing this research.

Breakdown List for Appealing Your Case, online at the fedcriminallawcenter.com site, by the Law Firm of Marcia G. Shein. Looks like it could be very useful. 2003

"The Criminal Justice System: A Survival Guide", by Cohen & Iaria, Attorneys, is a detailed, comprehensive, guide that explains the intracacies of the American "Justice" system. (2002)

"Legal Aspects of Search & Seizure" by John J. Knoll, Assistant City Attorney of Topeka, Kansas, is a comprehensive discussion of the legal aspects of that activity. Take a look -- you might need the knowledge some day.

The "No Lawyer" web page is a semi-commercial offering that may be helpful to victims of legal harassment. The site provides educational material, mainly videos, that instruct the viewer in such things as "The Appeal Process", "Power and Pitfalls of Federal Court", "Preparing for Trial", etc., all in support of pro se actions or just working with the courts and lawyers. There are also a few free access essays such as "Federal Rules of Evidence", "Notice of Appeal Form", and links to other resources. This announcement is for information only and is in no way an endorsement. We would appreciate any feedback from any users who try this service.

The Lawful Arrest FAQ is periodically posted to the newsgroups.

While this document is controversial (mainly because the author is not a lawyer, I suspect), I believe it is worth reading or at least knowing about for it does describe the "justice system" of the US as I believe it is. Further, it provides a tremendous source of links to other resources.

The document is also online at http://mu.clarityconnect.net/~ahimsa/, in a variety of formats, and at http://faqs.org/faqs/law/lawful-arrest/, in a plain text format.

"What You Should Know If You're Accused Of A Crime"
by Joyce B. David, Attorney at Law, © 1998. This is a useful book, now online for free perusal, that will help prepare you somewhat for the Kafkaesk world of Criminal Justice. It was written for New York state but still has much useful information for other states. You should read it before you get nailed. That means now!

The article, "Effective Search and Seizure", dated 1997, was apparently written to advise police officers what the rules are with regard to "search and seizure". The article contains good, factual, advice and many references to controlling court decisions up to that time.

Since forfeiture came to be mostly as an excuse to promote the Drug War Industry and is still triggered most of the time, by far, by the accusation that a person may be involved with unapproved drugs, it would seem reasonable to address that issue. That is, what should a person do if he or she is the object of suspicion by the police of having something to do with drugs? "Avoiding and Defending Potbusts in the 00's" by Attorney Jeffrey Steinborn, a former FEAR Board member.  This essay provides some good advice if you happen to fit this description. 

Even if you are not suspected of being into drugs and don't intend to be, this article is essential reading, for it tells us about how the "paid informant" hustle works and a bunch of other legal stuff, like "Terry Stops" and what you should say to a peace officer when he wants to "ask you a few questions".

Abuse by "Animal Abuse" Agencies:

Governments love serious problems, disasters, perceived evils, etc. It allows them to get involved. Not to solve the problem, of course, but just to expand government. For if the problem is solved, then jobs, money, and control would go away.

And so we have continued examples of government abuse through "abuse" programs -- child abuse, spouse abuse, sexual abuse, etc. The latest is animal abuse. Agencies have sprouted up throughout the land that are operating unchecked to destroy lives and seize property without any significant due process. How is this possible? Simple, the public fully supports it. No one wants to be perceived as supporting animal abuse. The twisted logic is that if you oppose government animal abuse agencies, you must love to see animals abused. Absurd.

Below are some links to web sites that discuss this issue. You should read this before the Animal Control bureaucrats come banging at your door!


For additional resources, please refer to our page on Victim Support.