§ 23-19.1-17.1 Seizure and forfeiture of property used to violate chapter.
(a) It shall be unlawful to willfully, knowingly, and intentionally use, or possess with the intention to so use, any aircraft, vehicle, vessel, draft animal, or other property to transport or dispose hazardous waste in violation of this chapter. Any property used this way may be seized, and shall be forfeited to the state.
(b) Any property subject to forfeiture may be seized by the director before forfeiture proceedings are instituted. Property seized shall remain in the care and custody and under the control of the director, pending disposition as provided in this section.
(c) The superior court for Providence County shall have jurisdiction to enforce forfeiture. Proceedings for forfeiture may be instituted and prosecuted in the name of the director.
(d) In the event that bond as provided in this section shall have been executed and the property returned before forfeiture proceedings have been instituted in the superior court, all parties executing the bond shall be given notice of the pendency of the proceedings, by personal service or publication, in any manner and form as the court may direct. Notice of the pendency of the proceedings shall be given to any persons and in any manner and form as the court may direct.
(e) When, in the opinion of the director, any seized property is liable to perish or become greatly reduced in price or value by keeping, or when it cannot be kept without great expense, the director shall appraise the property; and then:
(1) The owner shall have the property returned to him, her, or it, upon giving bond in an amount equal to the appraised value to abide the final order, decree, or judgment of the court in forfeiture proceedings under this section, and to pay the amount of the appraised value to the director, or as may be ordered and directed by the court; or
(2) If the owner shall neglect or refuse to give the bond, the director shall as soon as possible make public sale of the property. The proceeds of the sale, after deducting the reasonable costs of the seizure and sale, shall be paid to the court to abide its final order, decree, or judgment.
(f) Whenever any person interested in any property seized under this section files with the court before its final order, decree, or judgment a petition in any manner and form as the court may direct, for the mitigation of the forfeiture, the court may mitigate this forfeiture upon any terms and conditions as it deems just and reasonable, or may order discontinuance of the forfeiture proceedings, if the court finds any mitigating circumstances to justify the mitigation or discontinuance.
(g) After final order, decree or judgment granting forfeiture, the director may:
(1) Make public sale of the property. In this case the proceeds of the sale, after deducting the reasonable costs of the seizure and sale, shall be used by the director in furtherance of the enforcement of this chapter; or
(2) Use the property in furtherance of the enforcement of this chapter.
(h) The court may order and direct the director to deliver seized property to any interested party before a final order, decree, or judgment in a forfeiture proceeding, if the interested party shall give bond in the amount of the appraised value of the property to abide the final order, decree, or judgment of the court, and to pay the amount of the appraised value to the director, or as may be ordered and directed by the court. The value of the property shall be appraised in any manner as the court may order and direct, and the cost of the appraisal shall be paid by the interested party.
(i) Forfeiture of property under this section shall be in addition to any other penalty provided by law.
(P.L. 1984, ch. 75, § 1.)