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This article was published in 21/2/2014 (1933 days ago)
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Chris bachevich, 51, is suspected of running out of his small house twice.
Light cannabis planting surgery is for personal and medicinal use only, he said.
In addition to possible criminal penalties, the Manitoba government wants to take his Alfred Avenue residence, claiming it is a tool for criminal activity. (
Read police notes1. 6MB pdf)
Bachewich may eventually join the ranks of homeless and poor, a development.
Court records show that the house is his only asset and his de facto "retirement plan ".
"Even though he claims that there is not a penny of cash illegally obtained to pay for the mortgage, this has happened.
He has not yet been convicted of any crime.
In fact, even if he has never been convicted, the province can still try to take it from him.
This is the new order of "friendship" in Manitoba.
As the new provincial rules have greatly accelerated and simplified the process, the volume of civil forfeiture and net cash have surged over the past few years.
There have been 30 or 35 seizures in the past year, and the judge has to approve them, and there are now about 200.
The confiscation law is still very new.
They are relatively untested by the Supreme Court, which may mark a significant shift in the way provinces fight crime by transferring key elements to civil courts rather than criminal courts.
Michelle Gallant, a law professor at the University of Manitoba, studied confiscation laws in Canada and around the world and said they were at significant risk in due process.
Karl Gowenlock, counsel for the Winnipeg defense, agreed that the laws were too broad, too vague, and were used against their original purpose.
They also transfer the burden of proof from the state to the citizens, who must prove that the government claims that their property is not in conformity with justice. "They (the laws)
In the name of fighting organized crime.
"Got the proceeds of the gangsters," said Gowenlock . ".
"But in practice, these laws are about small-
Time growers or innocent landlords.
We rarely have a decision to tell us what is just and what is unclear.
Gowenlock said: "forcing owners to prove that they should be able to keep what the government wants to catch in order to counter a complex and expensive civil justice system.
Many people have given up the battle because it costs too much to continue.
"This creates two major risks," said Gowenlock . ".
"Innocent people will eventually confiscate their property when they have not done anything wrong. . .
Those who are guilty will eventually be punished in a way that is extremely inappropriate to their crimes.
Gowenlock, on behalf of Bachewich, declined to discuss the details of the case as the case was still pending.
In the four years since Manitoba law came into effect, the province confiscated more than $7 million in goods and cash.
The proceeds will be deposited into the Crime Victims Fund and a Police Department grant.
These grants buy everything from an automatic license.
Provide better trucks for police dog troops.
The seized goods mainly include cash from drug trading or drug cartels.
Sometimes hundreds of dollars, sometimes hundreds of thousands.
The biggest cash seizure to date is $435,695.
The province has also confiscated farmland and about 40 other properties for the cultivation of cannabis, usually houses and huts used for the cultivation of cannabis --ops.
A cabin in Lac Du Bonnet is about to be sold as the province stuck it after planting --op bust.
Fast through the new
The province has taken over 30 vehicles, including a brand --
New Ford F650 trucks and Caterpillar Forklifts.
By far, BC has been the most active in using the no-income method and has acquired $41 million in assets.
But the province is now facing criticism, the law is too wide, and the process has become a cash cow. B. C.
The ombudsman and B. C.
The Civil Liberties Association is concerned about this.
Gallant said the civil forfeiture process could undermine the traditional concept of due process that is prevalent in criminal courts.
In the civil court, citizens may not have the rights of the state.
Appointed lawyers, who may not be immune to the double danger, are not innocent until proven guilty.
And the burden of proof is much lower.
In criminal cases, the prosecution must prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.
In the civil court, this test involves the balance of probabilities.
That is why, in the vast majority of civil confiscation cases, people are rarely found guilty of related crimes until the government intervenes and takes their things away.
Two years ago, Manitoba adjusted the rules to allow it to bypass the tribunal and quickly seize assets affected by the crime as long as they were worth less than $75,000.
This process was called administrative confiscation, which caused some people's discontent.
This process can save the province from wasting time.
Applications in civil courts are very expensive.
Instead, if there is a large amount of cash in the province or a vehicle seized by the police, it will send a letter to the original owner and issue a notice of confiscation online.
If the owner does not object before the deadline, the forfeiture is completed.
Onlookers are often trapped in the law, says Gowenlock.
"Putting aside the question of when the government can take your property without first proving that you're doing something wrong," said Gowenlock . ".
"You can easily imagine the impact of this on marginalized people who don't necessarily have a stable mailing address or have to move around and have difficulty finding a lawyer or Commissioner.
"Director of the Manitoba Criminal confiscation division, Gaud Schumacher, the province said that the province combed the database and court records of all known addresses and did its best to find the owners of cash and property before the confiscation.
The dispute procedure is fairly simple, and even after the deadline, the owners can seek redress if they feel that the property has been unfairly seized.
On the Civil Front, cases of confiscation worth more than $75,000 have to be heard through the courts, and Schumacher said it is proud that no one has been tried.
This means that they have been identified at the initial discovery stage.
In most cases, the original owners saw evidence against them and abandoned their doubts, but the province also occasionally realized that confiscation was wrong and took a step back.
One of the five most unusual uses. year-
Under the old law, a football coach in South Winnipeg was found guilty of having sex to train a teenager.
More than a year before Stephen skavski had the opportunity to answer the charges in court --
He finally pleaded guilty.
The province took action to occupy his house, most of the scenes of sexual intervention and sexual exploitation.
Gallant has begun a detailed investigation of individual confiscation cases and has found that the vast majority of cases involve growth --
Action or depression in drug houses
So far, she has not encountered any cases similar to Skavinksy where links between crime and property are more fragile and do not involve organized crime or drugs.
"But there is a lot of potential," she said . "
This is because Manitoba's laws have an uncommon extra factor in confiscation legislation elsewhere in the Western world.
In this regard, the government may confiscate property used for illegal activities or for causing or potentially causing serious bodily harm. The bodily-
Harmful elements provide the province with more extensive powers to confiscate property than drug trade or gang activity.
For example, if the homeowner is fighting at home, the province can imagine catching it because it is the scene of the attack, just like the Skavinsky case.
Schumacher said that his unit handled very few cases that did not involve drugs, and that it was not in the spirit of the legislation or the interests of the judiciary to seize the house in which the attack occurred or the car of the person sentenced to dangerous driving.
However, the unit seized a car suspected of theft and a case similar to Skavinsky, where the province moved to a house where a serious sexual assault occurred. "The bodily-
The damage element is there and we rarely use it in some cases, but that's not the purpose, "Schumacher said.
But how do we know that no method works?
"At the very least, it is better to keep the dirty money under the control of the state, not in the hands of obvious drug dealers," Gallant said . ".
But in the long run, she says, it's hard to know if the confiscation of the law really does what they want --
Shrinking organized crime
Most governments, including Manitoba, are touting the total amount of cash they seized, rather than reducing gang activity.
That could change the focus of law enforcement, Gallant said.
Police may spend more time on drug attacks rather than fighting domestic violence because they usually bring in cash.
In the United States, civil confiscation laws are good.
This shift did happen to some extent.
But Schumacher says the procedures in Manitoba are more stringent and transparent.
What the department seized was not retained, and the process of issuing funds to the police department was carefully reviewed.
He said street intelligence and police feedback indicated that there was an impact on the lack of access.
"The purpose of organized crime is to make money, so it's painful to take the money away," he said . ".
"It disturbs the way they do business.
It takes the blood of life. "maryagnes. Welch @ freepress. mb. cajames.
Turner @ freepressmb.
According to the website of the provincial Department of Justice, Manitoba administrative confiscation of property from 2003 to 2014. Use the + and -
Controls on the left-
Or the scroll bar of the mouse, or pinch it on the touch screen --
Zoom in and out of the map.
The map includes data from around Manitoba.
Click on any of the marks in the map below for more details about the site's confiscation: the Green Mark shows a confiscation worth less than $1,000.
Yellow marking refers to seizures valued between $1,000 and $10,000.
The red mark shows seizures worth more than $10,000.
The purple dot marks seizures because there is not enough information to calculate the estimated value of seized items.
Is it difficult to use the map below?
Try to view it on Google.
You can also view the data in a table format on Google.
Map description: map data only includes administrative confiscation, excluding confiscation through the court.
The data include confiscation provided on the provincial government's website.
Of the 500 administrative files opened, approximately 400 were posted, including confiscated property;
There are about 70 fewer on this map.
The location of some confiscated items is vague, so some map locations are estimated.
The total value of the property seized is calculated based on the amount of cash reported by the police and the estimated value of the property. Where U. S.
The dollar was seized and the value was converted into Canadian dollars at the exchange rate on February 2014.
Where the vehicle is seized, based on the value of the Blue Book and The Black Book or the average asking price for similar vehicles in February 2014, the value of these vehicles is estimated in Canadian dollars.
The provisions of the criminal code, often referred to as "proceeds of crime", are places where a judge can order the confiscation of cash in connection with the drug trade after the accused is convicted.
This process is incorporated into criminal cases, and cash is usually flowing to the federal government.
But Gaud Schumacher, director of the criminal property confiscation unit at Manitoba Justice, said the process could take two to three years and that if the offender pleaded guilty, they would usually get their money back.
The process began four years ago.
It allows the province to use the civil court system rather than the criminal code to seize property acquired as a result of a crime or property used in a crime, usually in cash, such as a car or a house.
People who have never been convicted can confiscate their property.
In civil proceedings, the rules of evidence and proof are not so strict and are beneficial to the province.
Before the goods are kept, the province must present the case to the judge.
There is a statement of claim, a statement of defense, an affidavit and a process of discovery.
It could take months or even years, and could cost thousands of legal fees in the province.
That's why the province has not bothered to pursue hundreds of smaller confiscations worth thousands of dollars.
It came into effect two years ago.
This makes it easier and faster for the province to confiscate property.
If the property is worth less than $75,000, there is no need for the province to sue a civil court judge unless there is an objection to the confiscation process.
Instead, the province sent a notice of confiscation to the owner of the property and issued a list to be confiscatedto-be-
Property confiscated online
A notice was also published in the newspaper.
From there, the owner had about a month to dispute the seizure.
There is a fairly simple table to send.
At this point, the province can give up confiscation or hand over the procedure to the civil court, where all paperwork and court proceedings begin.
The dispute process is a long process for citizens.
At the end of last year, nearly 500 cases of public administrative confiscation were filed.
Of these, only 83 notices of dispute were submitted.
Among them, 59 were successful, prompting the province to abandon the process.
The remaining 24 files were handed over to the civil court and the province won each.
Cash enters the fund that pays compensation for victims and programming costs.
It also provides grants to the province's police department.
Earlier this month, the province announced $1 million.
The vehicle was auctioned.
The province has even made some requests for Kijiji to stimulate interest in the upcoming auction.
They recently used a seized Harley.
Land and houses are sold to willing buyers, usually contractors willing to undertake the large-scale repairs needed to repair the planting --op damage.
Gaud Schumacher of the Manitoba Department of Justice said that due to damage, a house usually worth $300,000 may only sell for $180,000.
He said that the province was frank about the history of a house and that any buyer knew that they had to get permission from the fire commissioner before checking in.
Often thousands of dollars worth of greenhouse equipment is confiscated, taking up a lot of expensive warehouse space.
Things like fluorescent lamps and electric fans are not hot items for resale, so the province has donated growth-
Op equipment for school science labs and provincial greenhouses, including one for Thompson.