Mabank, TX asked in Criminal Law for Texas

Q: Can the sheriff keep my truck that they seized for drugs? My friend borrowed it and got stopped and they found drugs.

Can the sheriff pull you over just because they think your transporting drugs?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Ryan Patrick Brown
Ryan Patrick Brown
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Amarillo, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: You have a right to fight for the truck in forfeiture proceedings. However, it is best to lay low until their deadlines blow. If this is a state forfeiture, the government’s deadline is 30 days to serve forfeiture paperwork. If they haven’t served you within that timeframe, you should be able to get your truck back. It is best to have a lawyer handle this because forfeitures can get complicated, especially with deadlines and discovery rules.

John Cucci Jr. agrees with this answer

John Cucci Jr.
John Cucci Jr. pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Houston, TX

A: The Sheriff or any police can pull over a truck on a public road if they have probable cause. That requires at least some particular, reliable, information, that the truck is being used as part of a crime.

I would like to know if there was a warrant to stop the truck, or if it was a traffic-stop used as a pretext for pulling your friend over. You should presume, for now, that there was some information about the truck being used for a crime. Do not talk with any police without an attorney.

As the other lawyer told you, wait for 30 days after the seizure, then make your claim for a return of the truck, with a lawyer. The only reason they could hold the truck is if it was for evidence. That would also require legal process and legal filings in court by the State.

Please get yourself an experienced attorney. Good Luck!

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