Current law already takes a step toward shutting a loophole that would allow state and local police to circumvent the more stringent state asset forfeiture process by passing cases off to the feds.
Sen Bart Hester (R-Cave Springs) introduced Senate Bill 308 (SB308) on Feb. 12. The new law specifically ends civil asset forfeiture in most Arkansas cases and replaces it with a criminal procedure. Under the law, prosecutors cannot proceed with forfeiture without a criminal conviction in all but a handful of cases.
There shall be no civil judgment under this subchapter and no property shall be forfeited unless the person from whom the property is seized is convicted of a felony offense that related to the property being seized and that permits the forfeiture of the property.
The Institute for Justice gave Arkansas asset forfeiture laws a D- grade, calling them "awful."