United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Sep 21, 2019

§ 773h.
Forfeitures
(a)
Civil forfeiture proceeding

Any fishing vessel (including its fishing gear, furniture, appurtenances, stores, and cargo) used, and any fish taken or retained, in any manner, in connection with or as a result of the commission of any act prohibited by section 773e of this title shall be subject to forfeiture to the United States. All or part of such vessel may, and all such fish shall, be forfeited to the United States pursuant to a civil proceeding under this section.

(b)
United States district court jurisdiction

Any district court of the United States shall have jurisdiction, upon application by the Attorney General on behalf of the United States, to order any forfeiture authorized under subsection (a) and any action provided for under subsection (d).

(c)
Seizure of forfeited property
If a judgment is entered for the United States in a civil forfeiture proceeding under this section, the Attorney General may seize any property or other interest declared forfeited to the United States, which has not previously been seized pursuant to this subchapter or for which security has not previously been obtained under subsection (d). The provisions of the customs laws relating to—
(1)
the disposition of forfeited property;
(2)
the proceeds from the sale of forfeited property;
(3)
the remission or mitigation of forfeitures; and
(4)
the compromise of claims;
shall apply to any forfeiture ordered, and to any case in which forfeiture is alleged to be authorized, under this section, unless such provisions are inconsistent with the purposes, policy, and provisions of this subchapter. The duties and powers imposed upon the Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection or other persons under such provisions shall, with respect to this subchapter, be performed by officers or other persons designated for such purpose by the Secretary.
(d)
Bond or other security; disposal of seized fish
(1)
Any officer authorized to serve any process in rem which is issued by a court having jurisdiction under section 773i(d) of this title shall—
(A)
stay the execution of such process; or
(B)
discharge any fish seized pursuant to such process;
upon the receipt of a satisfactory bond or other security from any person claiming such property. Such bond or other security shall be conditioned upon such person delivering such property to the appropriate court upon order thereof, without any impairment of its value, or paying the monetary value of such property pursuant to an order of such court. Judgment shall be recoverable on such bond or other security against both the principal and any sureties in the event that any condition thereof is breached, as determined by such court.
(2)
Any fish seized pursuant to this subchapter may be disposed of pursuant to the order of a court of competent jurisdiction or, if perishable, in a manner prescribed by regulations of the Secretary or the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating.
(e)
Presumption of violation

For purposes of this section, it shall be a rebuttable presumption that all fish found on board a fishing vessel which is seized in connection with an act prohibited by section 773e of this title were taken or retained in violation of the Convention and this subchapter.

(Pub. L. 97–176, § 10, May 17, 1982, 96 Stat. 81; Pub. L. 114–125, title VIII, § 802(d)(2), Feb. 24, 2016, 130 Stat. 210.)
cite as: 16 USC 773h