• Last updated on November 11, 2022

The Supreme Court determined that civil forfeitures in drug manufacturing and money laundering cases do not cause double jeopardy.

Congress passed laws requiring the forfeiture of property in drug manufacturing and money laundering cases. The defendant, Guy Ursery, was required to forfeit his property, including his house, in a drug manufacturing case. After he was convicted, he sought to have his conviction overturned on grounds that he had already been punished criminally by the forfeiture. He prevailed in a lower court that used United States v. Halper[case]Halper, United States v.[Halper, United States v.] (1989) to rule that civil penalties could be as punitive as criminal penalties. The Supreme Court, by a vote of eight to one, upheld the federal government’s imposition of civil forfeiture of property in drug manufacturing and money laundering cases. Without overturning Halper or holding that civil penalties could not be as punitive as criminal penalties, the Court held they were not punishment in this case and therefore could not constitute double jeopardy.Double jeopardy;Ursery, United States v.[Ursery, United States v.]

Double jeopardy

Due process, procedural

Fourteenth Amendment

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