Featuring the authors Robert Lawson, Director, O’Neil Center for Global Markets and Freedom Cox School of Business, Southern Methodist University; Benjamin Powell, Professor of Economics at Rawls College of Business, Texas Tech University; and Matt Kibbe, President, Free the People; moderated by Ian Vásquez, Director, Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, Cato Institute.
Caquelin v. United States is about an abstract but important question: when does the government take abandon railroad tracks under the Rails‐to‐Trails Act? Is it when notice is filed or after the negotiation period ends? It may seem unimportant, but the question affects thousands of property owners.
Criminal forfeiture should be limited to seizing only “tainted” assets. While joint and several liability might make sense in tort law, it does not fit within the framework of criminal law. Not only does the doctrine ignore the fundamental principle of proportionality in criminal sentencing—reflected in the Excessive Fines and Due Process Clauses—it undermines the punitive and remedial purposes of criminal forfeiture by allowing those who actually received the proceeds from a crime to potentially escape having to forfeit their assets while those who did not benefit are forced to give up their assets.