- Associated Press - Thursday, February 18, 2016

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - A Wyoming committee has advanced a second bill addressing the procedure the state must follow to take ownership of vehicles, cash and other property that law enforcement officers seize from citizens they believe are involved in illegal drug trafficking.

The House Judiciary Committee voted unanimously Thursday to endorse a bill to establish a civil court procedure to weigh the state’s claims when it seeks to forfeit private property. The same committee earlier endorsed a parallel bill that would allow the state to forfeit property only if the owner were convicted of a crime.

Gov. Matt Mead last year vetoed a bill that would require a criminal conviction to support forfeitures.

Wyoming Attorney General Peter Michael told the committee his office favors the bill that would require a civil court proceeding.

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