Illinois Compiled Statutes
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20 ILCS 3435/12
(20 ILCS 3435/12)
(a) Every device, equipment, tool, vehicle or conveyance, when used or operated illegally, or attempted to be used or operated illegally by any person in taking, transporting, holding, disturbing, exploring, excavating, collecting or conveying any archaeological or paleontological resources, contrary to the provisions of this Act, including administrative rules, is a public nuisance and subject to seizure and confiscation by any authorized employee of the Department; upon the seizure of such item the Department shall take and hold the same until disposed of as hereinafter provided.
(b) Upon the seizure of any property as herein provided, the authorized employee of the Department making such seizure shall forthwith cause a complaint to be filed before the circuit court and a summons to be issued requiring the person who illegally used or operated or attempted to use or operate such property and the owner and person in possession of such property to appear in court and show cause why the property seized should not be forfeited to the State. Upon the return of the summons duly served or other notice as herein provided, the court shall proceed to determine the question of the illegality of the use of the seized property and upon judgment being entered to the effect that such property was illegally used, an order may be entered providing for the forfeiture of such seized property to the Department and shall thereupon become the property of the Department; but the owner of such property may have a jury determine the illegality of its use, and shall have the right of an appeal, as in other cases. Such confiscation or forfeiture shall not preclude or mitigate against prosecution and assessment of penalties otherwise provided in this Act.
(c) Upon seizure of any property under circumstances supporting a reasonable belief that such property was abandoned, lost or stolen or otherwise illegally possessed or used contrary to the provisions of this Act, except property seized during a search or arrest, and ultimately returned, destroyed, or otherwise disposed of pursuant to order of a court in accordance with this Act, the Department shall make reasonable inquiry and efforts to identify and notify the owner or other person entitled to possession thereof, and shall return the property after such person provides reasonable and satisfactory proof of his ownership or right to possession and reimburses the Department for all reasonable expenses of such custody. If the identity or location of the owner or other person entitled to possession of the property has not been ascertained within 6 months after the Department obtains such possession, the Department shall effectuate the sale of the property for cash to the highest bidder at a public auction. The owner or other person entitled to possession of such property may claim and recover possession of the property at any time before its sale at public auction, upon providing reasonable and satisfactory proof of ownership or right of possession and reimbursing the Department for all reasonable expenses of custody thereof.
(d) Any property forfeited to the State by court order pursuant to this Section may be disposed of by public auction, except that any property which is the subject of such a court order shall not be disposed of pending appeal of the order. The proceeds of the sales at auction shall be deposited in the Historic Sites Fund.
(e) The Department shall pay all costs of notices required by this Section.
Property seized or forfeited under this Section is subject to reporting under the Seizure and Forfeiture Reporting Act.
(f) This Section does not apply to archaeological or paleontological resources that were recovered by the Department or other law enforcement agency during an investigation of a violation of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 103-446, eff. 8-4-23.)