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Justice groups: Ruling protects property rights

August 20, 2014
Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — In a decision that civil rights groups said would protect property owners' rights, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that evidence obtained during illegal searches cannot be used to take someone's property through civil forfeitures.

The ruling comes in the case of a man whose vehicle and money were seized by Plymouth police after they found drugs during a 2012 traffic stop.

A state court judge found that the stop was illegal. And the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the man has standing to challenge the civil forfeiture, and sent the case back to the appeals court to resolve a host of legal issues.

Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman says his office is considering its options, including arguing before the appeals court or appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.



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