United States of America v. One 2007 P T Cruiser, VIN 3A4FY58B87T546414
ORDER of Forfeiture, it is ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECREED that the defendant, One 2007 P T Cruiser, VIN 3A4FY58B87T546414, is forfeited to the plaintiff for disposition according to law. Signed by Judge Callie V. S. Granade on 4/17/2013. (mab)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
ONE 2007 P T CRUISER, VIN
CIVIL ACTION NO. 13-0041-CG-M
ORDER OF FORFEITURE
This matter is before the Court on plaintiff’s Motion for Order and Judgment
of Forfeiture (Doc. 6). For cause shown, the Motion is GRANTED.
On January 28, 2013, the plaintiff filed a Verified Complaint for Forfeiture In
Rem against the above-named defendant, alleging it is subject to forfeiture
pursuant to Title 8, United States Code, Section 1324(b)(1), which subjects to
forfeiture any conveyance, including any vessel, vehicle, or aircraft, that has been or
is being used in the commission of a violation of Section 1324(a), more specifically,
The Alabama State Troopers seized the defendant vehicle on August 20,
2012, in Baldwin County, Alabama, eastbound on Interstate 10. The driver, Santos
Modesto Ochoa, also known as Ochoa-Zambrono, was arrested on that date based on
his involvement in knowing or acting with reckless disregard of the fact that an
alien entered or remained in the United States, and knowingly transporting or
moving an alien in the United States.
In United States v. Santos Modesto Ochoa, (“Ochoa”) Cr. No: 12-00199-KD, a
related criminal action, Ochoa pled guilty to Count One of the Indictment which
charged him with a violation of 8 U.S.C. Section 1324(a)(1)(A)(ii), namely, that he
knew or acted in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien entered or remained in
the United States in violation of the law, and that he knowingly transported or
moved the alien within the United States in furtherance of the violation. In
connection with his guilty plea, Ochoa admitted under oath that the day before he
was stopped by state troopers, where he had traveled to a Houston, Texas, Shell
station where a woman in a white minivan pulled up with three Hispanic males.
The Hispanic males got into his vehicle and he drove off. Ochoa refused to answer
the agent’s questions as to how he knew where to go, how the unidentified woman
who drove the van knew him, and refused to answer any other questions. Border
Patrol Agent from Torres determined the three passengers were Hondurans who
had entered the country illegally.
The subject vehicle, which bore South Carolina plates, was registered to
As set forth in plaintiff’s motion and exhibits, on the same date that it filed
its verified complaint, the plaintiff faxed and mailed a copy of the Complaint, Notice
and Warrant for Arrest to known potential claimant, Ochoa, to Carlos A. Williams,
Esquire, his attorney in a related criminal action, and to ABC Towing, notifying
them of their right to file a claim in this Court within thirty five (35) days of the
date that said notice was sent (by March 4, 2013) and to file a motion or an answer
within 21 days thereafter, in accordance with Supplemental Rule G(4)(b)(ii)(B) and
Accordingly, known potential claimants to whom plaintiff sent direct notice
had until March 4, 2013, to file a claim, and until March 25, 2013, to file a motion or
an answer. No such claims, motions or answers were filed.
On January 30, 2013, notice of this seizure and forfeiture action, of the right
of any persons claiming legal interest in the defendant property to file a claim with
the court and a motion or answer within 21 days thereafter was published on the
Internet at www.forfeiture.gov from January 30, 2013 through February 28, 2013.
Any putative claimant who received notice from the internet had to file a claim by
February 28, 2013. No such claims, motions or answer have been filed, and the
time to do so has expired.
All identifiable potential claimants have been sent notice. All potential
claimants have had adequate notice and time in which to file a claim, motion or an
answer. No such claims, motions or answers have been filed and the filing
deadlines have expired.
On February 8, 2013, the U.S. Border Patrol executed the Warrant for Arrest
issued by the Clerk thereby arresting the defendant, One 2007 P T Cruiser,
3A4FY58B87T546414, which gave the Court in rem jurisdiction over it.
With no claims, motions or answers having been filed in opposition to the
forfeiture of said defendant, and there being no remaining issues, final disposition
of this action is appropriate at this time.
NOW, THEREFORE, the Court having considered the matter and having
been fully advised in the premises, it is ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and
DECREED as follows:
This Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter and the defendant
vehicle, and the complaint states a claim upon which relief may be granted.
In accordance with the Verified Complaint, the defendant, One 2007 P T
Cruiser, VIN 3A4FY58B87T546414, is ORDERED forfeited to the plaintiff, the
United States of America, pursuant to Title 8 U.S.C. Section 1324(b)(1), for
disposition according to law. A separate Judgment will be entered.
This Order and the accompanying Judgment resolving all matters and
issues joined in this action, the Clerk of Court is directed to close this file for
administrative and statistical purposes.
DONE and ORDERED this 17th day of April, 2013.
/s/ Callie V. S. Granade
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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