Power of Seizure

Only biological, theft, and destructive crimes are seizable.   No person can be seized unless there is probable cause to believe he has committed a seizable crime, and no thing can be seized unless there is probable cause to believe it is an instrument or product of the commission of a seizable crime.   The provisions of this section must not be construed to impair further restrictions on seizure elsewhere in this document.

A court has no power in criminal law over a person or thing, particularly no power to order a seizure thereof, unless it is a criminal court that has received a criminal indictment of that person for a seizable crime, or received a criminal indictment of that thing identifying it as an instrument or product of the commission of a seizable crime.   In any case, if the seizable crime is not described by the laws enforced by that court, the indictment is defective and creates no authority.

A criminal indictment must be filed directly with a specific criminal court, and that court's geographic correlate must contain the location where the indicted party or thing is believed to be located.   An indictment filed after a seizure must be filed with the most local possible criminal court.   If an indictment is filed by an agent of an investigative branch, the geographic correlate of that investigative branch must contain the location where the indicted party or thing is believed to be located.

A justice of a criminal court can order a seizure of a person into the custody of an officer of his court only if the person is a fugitive, or the person has been accused of a seizable crime in a formal filing with the justice's court of a specific and signed criminal indictment by an agent of the investigative branch or by a party that has already performed a lawful seizure.   A criminal indictment must specifically identify the crimes committed, the time and place of commitment to extent known, the identity and description of the victims to extent known, and the identity or description of the persons or things to be seized with maximum possible specificity, and necessarily with sufficient detail to make error unlikely.   An officer of a court can act in his official capacity outside the confines of state facilities only pursuant to the seizure order of a justice of that court.

An officer of a court can seize a person or thing only pursuant to a specific seizure order of a justice of that court, which must identify or describe the persons or things to be seized with maximum possible specificity and necessarily with sufficient detail to make error unlikely, and must specify a facility (a jail, a courthouse, a storage facility, etc.) to which they are to be delivered without unnecessary delay, which facility must be controlled by that court.   Transfer of the persons or things to the custody of a trial court is subsequent, and upon the request of the trial court, must be arranged and performed without unnecessary delay.

A private law enforcement officer, on the private property he is contracted to guard, can seize a person (and any things that accompany him) whom he knows to be a fugitive or to have committed a seizable crime for which he has been indicted, but not yet seized pursuant thereto, by an agent of the investigative branch of a unit of state whose geographic correlate contains the location of the person, in a court of a unit of state whose geographic correlate contains the location of the person.

A bail bondsman can seize a fugitive individual pursuant to a contract entered previously by that individual, regardless of location.

Any citizen can seize a person whom he has stopped or caught in the act of committing a seizable crime, in any location where the act is a seizable crime.

No person or thing can otherwise be seized.

Any seizure by someone who is not an officer of a criminal court must be followed by transfer of the seized persons or things to the custody of an officer of a criminal court, without unnecessary delay.   Until this transfer, any seized person must remain under the direct supervision of the seizing party.   Upon an initial seizure by a private LEO, bail bondsman, or citizen, without unnecessary delay he must obtain access to an apparatus capable of constructing and transmitting a signed message to the most local criminal court or to a court of preexisting indictment, construct a message identifying the seizing party, supplying a proper signed criminal indictment if one has not already been filed, explaining the time and location of the seizure, and transmit the resulting message to the court of preexisting indictment, or if none exists, to the most local criminal court.   In acknowledging the message, the court must specify a facility where the persons or things seized will be accepted for delivery, which must not be unnecessarily distant.   The party that performed the initial seizure can, at his discretion, transport and deliver the persons or things seized to this facility, without unnecessary delay.   Absent such a delivery in progress, if no officer of the court takes custody of the seized persons or things within eight hours of the delivery of the message of initial seizure, any persons seized must be released, and the owner of any things seized must be notified that he can take custody of the things, which at his request must be released into his custody or into the custody of any person who presents an authorization to take custody signed by the owner.

The enforcement branch is exclusively responsible for training and licensing anyone who is a bail bondsman or private law enforcement officer.



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