Baxter v. United States

451 Fed. Appx. 868



When an owner invokes Fed. R. Crim. P. 41(g) after the close of all criminal proceedings, a court treats the motion for return of property as a civil action in equity. Consequently, such Rule 41(g) actions are subject to the six-year statute of limitations found in 28 U.S.C.S. § 2401(a). 


Petitioner, a federal prisoner, appealed from the district court’s denial of his motion to release a hold on property and his motion to disqualify the district judge. Petitioner claimed that the government illegally placed a hold on his vehicle in 2003, but he waited more than six years, in 2011, before the filing of the motion.


Whether a petitioner’s motion, made in 2003 but filed formally in 2011, was under the district court’s jurisdiction?




The petitioner’s motion was rendered untimely under 28 U.S.C.S. §2401(a). The district court had no jurisdiction to consider the motion and thus correctly dismissed it. Because the district court had no jurisdiction to hear the petitioner’ s motion to release the hold, there were no proceedings pending before the court from which the judge could have disqualified herself. Accordingly, the court also lacked jurisdiction over petitioner’s motion for disqualification. Judgment affirmed.

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