A bill prefiled in the Arizona House would reform the state’s asset forfeiture laws to prohibit the state from taking a person’s property without a criminal conviction in most situations. The proposed legislation would build on important reforms signed into law in 2017.
Rep. Bob Thorpe (R-Flagstaff) filed House Bill 2149 (HB2149) on Jan. 9. Under the proposed law, Arizona prosecutors would not be able to proceed with the asset forfeiture process without a criminal conviction.
HB2149 is similar to another bill prefiled for the upcoming session (HB2032)
An AZCIR analysis in 2017 found that Arizona agencies seized nearly $200 million in property between 2011 and 2015 from people who may never have been charged or convicted of a crime.