The state Senate Wednesday approved Senate Bill 1113, which allows a citizen to recover attorney’s fees and associated costs if they successfully challenge a civil forfeiture.
“I am glad the Senate took a small step toward reform this morning,” said Sen. Kyle D. Loveless (R-Oklahoma City). “I have worked for nearly a year on this issue and believe there is still work to be done to correct this flawed law.”
Last year, Loveless introduced SB 838, the Personal Asset Protection Act, and earlier this year introduced a more extensive reform package in SB 1189. Neither bill received a hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“I see this bill as a step in the right direction, but I don’t believe it goes far enough,” said Loveless. “Civil asset forfeiture reform has become a national discussion and other states now require a criminal conviction before the government can seize property. I will continue to meet with the law enforcement community and district attorneys to discuss how we can move closer to an agreement on comprehensive reform in Oklahoma.”
SB 1113, by Sen. David Holt (R-Oklahoma City), now moves to the House of Representatives for further action.