Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorneys
What Is Civil Asset Forfeiture?

What Is Civil Asset Forfeiture?

Civil asset forfeiture allows police officials to seize assets from individuals who are suspected of committing a crime. You don’t even have to be convicted of a crime to have your property taken. The Florida Contraband Forfeiture Act states that law enforcement must have “proof beyond a reasonable doubt” that someone committed a crime, but law-abiding citizens can't prevent the police from taking their property, even if it's wrongful. Where does the money go? Usually, it goes to the police department's bank account.

Many critics believe civil forfeiture this provides an incentive for police offices to simply take money. Just think about a police officer’s motivation when it comes to forfeiture: a police officer stops a person and finds them in possession of what they think is "too much" cash. No crime is committed, and no arrest occurs, but the officer seizes the cash anyway because he thinks it's suspicious. If this situation were to occur, the local police can keep up to 80 percent of the money they seize.

Florida Forfeiture Issues

It's hard to imagine a more disturbing conflict of interest between honest police work and the desire to increase the department budget at the expense of law-abiding citizens. Many legal experts have concluded that it is an inherent conflict of interest because the agency that seizes money gets to spend it. It is no wonder that Florida forfeitures have increased in the past decade. In many cases, police officers are seizing property and disposing of that property without oversight. In Bal Harbour, a forfeiture network took in nearly 50 million dollars in a 3-year span.

What Should You Do If Florida Police Have Seized Your Assets?

Thankfully, Florida law protect property owners. If your assets have been seized from a Florida police officer, there is still hope. Our Florida forfeiture defense lawyers can help you through this challenging process. We can make sure that the police department bears the burden of proving that the money or property is related to criminal activity. Our firm takes forfeiture defense cases seriously. We often take these cases on a contingency basis, meaning that if you don't get paid, you don't owe us anything for our services. Don't delay—there is little time to act after the seizure of money or property before your rights to the property are waived.

If your money or property has been taken, please give us a call: (954) 543-1788.

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Our Victories

  • Not Guilty, Acquitted at Trial Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon

    Outcome: Client was alleged to have used his vehicle to strike victim, and there was video of the incident which could have been interpreted to actually show the crime. The state was offering significant prison time before trial. By meticulous planning and strategic cross-examination to expose the motives and fabrications by the alleged victim, and an eyewitness in support of the alleged victim, Rudenberg & Glasser convinced a jury to acquit the client and avoid a mandatory long prison sentence.

  • Domestic Violence
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser went to trial and were able to show during cross-examination that the alleged victim was the aggressor and that the client acted in self-defense. The jury returned a not guilty verdict almost immediately following trial.
  • Domestic Violence With 911 Call and Pictures
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser took the case to trial after fleshing out inconsistencies in the alleged victim's account. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty and the client's unblemished record was preserved.
  • False Arrest

    Outcome: Attorney Glasser was able to show with video footage that his client did not commit the alleged offense and furthermore, the police officer who ordered his arrest was negligent in his investigation and improperly supervised.

    Read more about this story on the Sun Sentinel.

  • Probation Only Federal Conspiracy to Commit Mail & Wire Fraud

    Outcome: Through compelling sentencing memorandum and passionate oral argument, Rudenberg & Glasser were able to convince the federal court judge to sentence their client to treatment for substance abuse, and no incarceration, even though the client had a lengthy criminal history and the Government was seeking prison time.

  • Felony DUI: Client was in an Accident and Left the Scene
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser filed a compelling motion to suppress evidence based on law enforcement's actions during the investigation. Rudenberg & Glasser were able to persuade the prosecutor prior to the motion to suppress hearing that the charge should be broken down from a felony to a misdemeanor and the client was offered probation instead of the previously sought prison sentence.
  • Final Injunction Hearing
    Outcome: Client desperately needed to avoid a final injunction on his record. Rudenberg & Glasser defended him at the hearing and proved that the Petitioner was not in fear for her safety. The judge dismissed the injunction.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor: Resisting Police Officer Without Violence
    Outcome: Mr. Rudenberg presented evidence that the police officer’s version of events was not credible, and that accusations were made to justify excessive use of force by police officer. Jury returned a verdict of not guilty in less than five minutes.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanors: DUI & Possession of Cannabis
    Outcome: Mr. Rudenberg won a motion arguing the DUI checkpoint was conducted in violation of the Fourth Amendment, and the Judge entered an order suppressing all evidence. Case was dropped by the State, and client avoided a mandatory conviction for DUI, as well as mandatory fines and license suspensions.
  • $250,000 Pre-Trial Personal Injury

    Outcome: Client was injured by a malfunctioning door, requiring stitches and leaving a scar on client's knee. There were limited medical bills and no surgeries, but through extremely challenging and successful negotiations, Rudenberg & Glasser were able to secure a settlement of $250,000.

What Our Clients Are Saying

We go above and beyond to be there for clients to provide them with the best outcome possible.
  • “The amount of respect and empathy Attorney Rudenberg has for his clients can not be described in words.”

    C J

  • “THE BEST ATTORNEY”

    A. Ariel

  • “I don’t usually post reviews but I had to make an exception in this case. Mike and everyone at the office were beyond helpful. Went to court twice once to find out my charges the last to find out everything was dropped. I couldn’t have asked for a more pro”

    G.P.

  • “There are no words for the love and respect I have for Mike and I wouldn't even think of using anyone else as my attorney.”

    JW

  • “In My Eyes, He's the Best”

    Greg

  • “I’ve used Mike and Eric for my cases since 2012.”

    J.R

  • “Outstanding”

    Jonathan mujica

  • “I would recommend them to anyone that’s looking for someone that really cares!”

    R.N.

  • “Their great efforts got us the most unexpected, but amazing outcome for what we were up against.”

    M.C.

  • “If anyone, family or friends, should get into trouble we know who to call!”

    Parent of Charles C.

  • “Michael jumped through hoops to give me the defense I deserved and I will always be grateful. Michael and Eric are not just Lawyers, they are friends and will look out for your best interest!”

    G.W.

  • “You were so very wonderful in court.”

    P.M.

  • “It's nice to know that you actually cared and it didn't seem like this case was just another folder.”

    John J.

  • “They Were There with Me Every Step of the Way”

    Dan

  • “Great results, compassionate service, and extremely professional.”

    C.C.