UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA WESTERN DIVISION
October 22, 2009
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFF,
$15,207.00 IN U.S. CURRENCY, DEFENDANT.
FAUSTINO REYES ROCHA AND LUZ ROMAN, CLAIMANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: The Honorable Christina A. Snyder United States District Judge
On May 26, 2009, plaintiff United States of America ("plaintiff" or the "government") filed a Complaint for Forfeiture against $15,207.00 in U.S. Currency (the "defendant currency"). The government alleged that the defendant currency was subject to forfeiture pursuant to 21 U.S.C. § 881(a)(6) and §§ 981(a)(1)(A) and (C).
Claimants Faustino Reyes Rocha and Luz Roman filed verified claims on July 13, 2009, but have not filed answers. No other claims, statements of interest, or answers have been filed, and the time for filing claims, statements, and answers has expired.
The government and claimants have agreed to settle this forfeiture action and to avoid further litigation.
The Court having been duly advised of and having considered the matter, and based upon the consent of plaintiff and claimants,
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, ADJUDGED, AND DECREED:
1. This Court has jurisdiction over this action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1345 and 1355.
2. The Complaint for Forfeiture states a claim for relief pursuant to 21 U.S.C. § 881(a)(6) and §§ 981(a)(1)(A) and (C).
3. Notice of this action has been given in accordance with law. All potential claimants to the defendant currency other than claimants are deemed to have admitted the allegations of the Complaint. The allegations set out in the Complaint are sufficient to establish a basis for forfeiture.
4. The United States of America shall have judgment as to $4,841.00 of the defendant currency, plus all interest earned by the government on the entirety of the defendant currency, and no other person or entity shall have any right, title or interest therein. The United States Marshals Service is ordered to dispose of said assets in accordance with law.
5. $10,366.00 of the defendant currency, without any interest earned by the government on that amount, shall be returned to claimants Faustino Reyes Rocha and Luz Roman. Said funds shall be forwarded by check made payable to "Alex B. Perez, Esq., Attorney-Client Trust Account," and shall be mailed to Alex B. Perez, Esq., Law Offices of Alex B. Perez, 1440 North Harbor Blvd., Suite 900, Fullerton, California 92835.
6. Claimant hereby releases the United States of America, its agencies, officers, and employees, including employees of the Drug Enforcement Administration, and local law enforcement agencies, their agents, officers, and employees, from any and all claims, actions, or liabilities arising out of or related to this action, including, without limitation, any claim for attorneys' fees, costs, or interest on behalf of claimants, whether pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2465 or otherwise.
7. The Court finds that there was reasonable cause for the institution of these proceedings against the defendant currency. This judgment shall be construed as a certificate of reasonable cause pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2465.
8. The Court further finds that claimant did not substantially prevail in this action, and the parties shall bear their own attorneys' fees and other costs of litigation.
The government and claimants consent to judgment and waive any right to appeal.
DATED: October 22, 2009
GEORGE CARDONA Acting United States Attorney CHRISTINE C. EWELL Assistant United States Attorney Chief, Criminal Division STEVEN R. WELK Assistant United States Attorney Chief, Asset Forfeiture Section.
FRANK D. KORTUM Assistant United States Attorney Attorneys for Plaintiff United States of America.
DATED: October 22, 2009
LAW OFFICES OF ALEX B. PEREZ ALEX B. PEREZ Attorney for Claimants Faustino Reyes Rocha and Luz Roman.
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