If you have questions about Forfeiture law, please call me for a free consultation.  I recently filed the Federal Class Action lawsuit of Washington v. Marion County Prosecutor, challenging Indiana”s vehicle forfeiture seizure law.  The Federal Judge agreed with my position, ruling that the Indiana forfeiture statute was unconstitutional, under the Due Process clause of the US Constitution. The Federal Judge also issued an injunction against against the Indianapolis Prosecutor ordering him to cease vehicle forfeiture.

I also co-authored the amicus brief for the United States Supreme Court case of Timbs v. Indiana, in which the Supreme Court held that Indiana’s attempts at forfeiture were unconstitutional under the Excessive Fines clause of the US Constitution.

Civil forfeiture is a legal fiction that allows the government to take action against inanimate objects regardless of whether the owner is charged with a crime. [1] Forfeiture traces its roots to Roman and medieval English law, but originated in Biblical and pre-Judeo-Christian practices. [2] At common law, an object that caused the death of a King’s subject, even if accidentally, was forfeited to the Crown as a deodand. [3] The value of the object was then used for charitable purposes or to pay for masses for the dead man’s soul. [4] Over time, Prosecutors began using forfeiture to obtain jurisdiction over property when violators of maritime law were overseas and could not be prosecuted. [5] Today, all States allow for forfeiture and there are over four hundred federal forfeiture statutes. [6]

Justice Thomas of the United States Supreme Court has explained: “This system – where police can seize property with limited judicial oversight and retain it for their own use – has led to egregious and well-chronicled abuses. . . I am skeptical that this historical practice is capable of sustaining, as a constitutional matter, the contours of modern practice.” [7]

Randall Shepard, Chief Justice of the Indiana Supreme Court, wrote: “An important feature of many of these statutes is characterization of the process as civil forfeiture under which (by contrast to criminal forfeiture) a property owner need not be found guilty of a crime—or even charged—to lose permanently their cash, car, home or other property. The relative ease of effecting such forfeiture and the disposition of the assets have become a matter of public note.” [7]

In a case I recently handled, Judge Manion, a Federal Judge on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals wrote: “in 2015, law enforcement took more property from Americans than criminals did . . . vehicle forfeitures are economically painful. Many Americans depend on cars for food, school, work, medical treatment, church, relationships, arts, sports, recreation, and anything farther away than the ends of their driveways. Cars extend us. Cars manifest liberty. A person released on bond, retaining a presumption of innocence, might suffer virtual imprisonment if he cannot regain his vehicle in time to drive to work.”   

If you have any questions about your case, please do not hesitate to contact me.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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Mr cardella, was by far the best attorney, I’ve ever had, or dealt with my entire life.the communication is 2nd to none. I’ve had many attorneys thru my life for various needs and this was by far the easiest process I’ve had. These days most attorneys you have to call several times and when u reach or see them they seem to not pay attention to you or what you want, Jeff is not like the rest. Definitely hire Jeff cardella!!!

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Jeff Rocks
Jeff demonstrated a great moral and positive character while working on my nephew’s case. He communicated promptly with my family as the case progressed and was easily accessible. We appreciated his honesty regarding the different scenarios and possible outcomes of the case. We were honor to have him as our attorney. Please do not hesitate to retain him, he will work diligently on your family behalf. We respected the fact he does a lot of the leg work himself.

I was thoroughly impressed with the service at Jeff Cardella Law Offices. One of the things that distinguished Mr. Cardella from some of the other law practices that I called was the level of care and customer service that was attached to our conversation. I called expecting to speak to a receptionist and was connected directly to him. Mr. Cardella took a true consultative approach to make sure that my needs was addressed specifically to my situation. I highly recommend giving the Cardella office a call.

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Great experience, helped me beat an undeserved ticket and allowed me to focus my time on my studies instead of dealing with it all myself. Would recommend to anyone.

My experience with Mr. Jeff Cardella was a positive experience since our first consult. He was reassuring and very reliable. I would recommend his services to everyone!

I was thoroughly impressed with the service at Jeff Cardella Law Offices. One of the things that distinguished Mr. Cardella from some of the other law practices that I called was the level of care and customer service that was attached to our conversation. I called expecting to speak to a receptionist and was connected directly to him. Mr. Cardella took a true consultative approach to make sure that my needs was addressed specifically to my situation. I highly recommend giving the Cardella office a call.

Jeff Rocks
Jeff demonstrated a great moral and positive character while working on my nephew’s case. He communicated promptly with my family as the case progressed and was easily accessible. We appreciated his honesty regarding the different scenarios and possible outcomes of the case. We were honor to have him as our attorney. Please do not hesitate to retain him, he will work diligently on your family behalf. We respected the fact he does a lot of the leg work himself.

I found Jeff to be an excellent attorney. He is very reasonable and level headed, empathetic but not a pushover. He always answered our questions directly. Hiring him was a great decision. Highly recommend and would use his services again.

Mr cardella, was by far the best attorney, I’ve ever had, or dealt with my entire life.the communication is 2nd to none. I’ve had many attorneys thru my life for various needs and this was by far the easiest process I’ve had. These days most attorneys you have to call several times and when u reach or see them they seem to not pay attention to you or what you want, Jeff is not like the rest. Definitely hire Jeff cardella!!!

Mr. Cardella is a great criminal attorney! Used his services for not only the criminal case but the expungement as well. Nothing but excellent service through the whole process!

Attorney Cardella is simply Excellent with his practice, professionalism, as well as expertise. I thank him most sincerely for All that he accomplished for my family.

I was very fortunate to have had one of my family members being represented by Mr. Cardella. As soon as I made the phone call, he took the case right away, represented the case, took charge and guided us step by step, not waisting one minute. He responded to calls or emails very fast, in a very professional and knowledgable manner. I had full trust in him from the realizing that he had great expertise as a defense attorney. All along he was also supportive and no question was left unanswered. Due to his prompt interventions and guidance the court has not pursued the case. I”ll be forever grateful and I would not hesitate to highly recommend him to friends or family in need of legal services.

Jeff Cardella, LLC provided excellent, professional services as my criminal defense attorney in Indiana. Despite all daunting uncertainties as someone who had never needed legal services, much less criminal legal services before, he helped me feel informed and prepared every step of the way ensuring best possible outcome.

I can’t describe how grateful I was to find Mr. Jeff on the internet, on the evening that my charges were filed. I called him at 5:30pm and he immediately accepted my case. He took the time to communicate and overview my challenges for the case in the same evening. Because of his swift investigation and gather of evidence, the courts are not pursuing my charges. Every case is different, but I’m humbly grateful and will retain him as my lawyer forever. Great job sir! Thanks so much for your hard work and speedy results.

Jeff Cardella is a very good criminal defense attorney. He’s a straight shooter who is honest and diligent.

I will never forget the situation that I was going through. I didn’t realize it at the time but do now, that a good attorney will listen first and tell you the truth about your situation and how he’s going to resolve your situation.

One last thing about Jeff Cardella. He is very good communicator, you will be communicated with on a consistent basis. I thank you Jeff for representing me and making me feel like I mattered. I have my life back and I feel blessed that you represented me.

Jeff Cardella is a very good criminal defense attorney. He’s a straight shooter who is honest and diligent.

I will never forget the situation that I was going through. I didn’t realize it at the time but do now, that a good attorney will listen first and tell you the truth about your situation and how he’s going to resolve your situation.

One last thing about Jeff Cardella. He is very good communicator, you will be communicated with on a consistent basis. I thank you Jeff for representing me and making me feel like I mattered. I have my life back and I feel blessed that you represented me.

I can’t describe how grateful I was to find Mr. Jeff on the internet, on the evening that my charges were filed. I called him at 5:30pm and he immediately accepted my case. He took the time to communicate and overview my challenges for the case in the same evening. Because of his swift investigation and gather of evidence, the courts are not pursuing my charges. Every case is different, but I’m humbly grateful and will retain him as my lawyer forever. Great job sir! Thanks so much for your hard work and speedy results.

Jeff Cardella, LLC provided excellent, professional services as my criminal defense attorney in Indiana. Despite all daunting uncertainties as someone who had never needed legal services, much less criminal legal services before, he helped me feel informed and prepared every step of the way ensuring best possible outcome.

I was very fortunate to have had one of my family members being represented by Mr. Cardella. As soon as I made the phone call, he took the case right away, represented the case, took charge and guided us step by step, not waisting one minute. He responded to calls or emails very fast, in a very professional and knowledgable manner. I had full trust in him from the realizing that he had great expertise as a defense attorney. All along he was also supportive and no question was left unanswered. Due to his prompt interventions and guidance the court has not pursued the case. I”ll be forever grateful and I would not hesitate to highly recommend him to friends or family in need of legal services.

Attorney Cardella is simply Excellent with his practice, professionalism, as well as expertise. I thank him most sincerely for All that he accomplished for my family.

Mr. Cardella is a great criminal attorney! Used his services for not only the criminal case but the expungement as well. Nothing but excellent service through the whole process!

Jeff is extremely kind and easy to work with. Excellent at explaining how things work, answering questions, and helping through the expungement process. Would highly recommend!

Mr. Cardella was EXCELLENT with his professional and honest attitude and approach with my case in Hendricks county. I am so grateful for Mr. Cardella getting my case dismissed so I can move forward with life.

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Jeff is extremely kind and easy to work with. Excellent at explaining how things work, answering questions, and helping through the expungement process. Would highly recommend!

Mr. Cardella was EXCELLENT with his professional and honest attitude and approach with my case in Hendricks county. I am so grateful for Mr. Cardella getting my case dismissed so I can move forward with life.

Friendly, explains things clearly, plus very quick to help and respond. I was impressed with his service and would use again.

Fantastic lawyer. Does what he promises to do. Would highly recommend you try him if you ever get into a situation. You will not be disappointed.

Excellent criminal Defense attorney

If you need a criminal defense attorney in Hamilton County I would suggest Jeff car delliac.He is an excellent criminal defense attorney he responded to every telephone call text and email I sent him almost immediately never had a lawyer do that before. I would definitely recommend him fot criminal defense! I was very well satisfied with the Judgment he got me.

[1] Serrano v. State, 946 N.E.2d 1139, 1141 (Ind. 2011). [2] Id. and Calero v. Pearson Yacht Leasing Co., 416 U.S. 663, 681 (1974). [3] Calero, 416 U.S. at 681. [4] Id. [5]  Serrano, 946 N.E.2d at 1141. [6] Id. [7] Leonard v. Texas, 137 S. Ct. 847, 848-849 (2017)(Thomas, concurring). [8] Serrano at 1141.