2012 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes
Title 42 - JUDICIARY AND JUDICIAL PROCEDURE
Chapter 83 - Particular Rights and Immunities
Section 8312 - Profits received as a result of commission of crime

§ 8312.  Profits received as a result of commission of crime.

(a)  General rule.--If a person has been convicted of a crime, every person who knowingly contracts for, pays or agrees to pay any profit from a crime to that person shall give written notice to the board of the payment or obligation to pay as soon as practicable after discovering that the payment or intended payment is a profit from a crime. The board, upon receipt of notice of a contract, an agreement to pay or payment of profits from a crime, shall notify all known eligible persons at their last known address of the existence of the profits.

(b)  Right of action.--Notwithstanding any inconsistent provision of law or rules of civil procedure with respect to the timely bringing of an action, any eligible person shall have the right to bring a civil action in a court of competent jurisdiction to recover money damages from a person convicted of a crime or the legal representative of that convicted person within three years of the discovery of any profits from a crime. Any damages awarded in this action shall be recoverable only up to the value of the profits from the crime. If an action is filed under this subsection after the expiration of all other applicable statutes of limitation, any other eligible person must file any action for damages as a result of the crime within three years of the actual discovery of profits from the crime or of actual notice received from or notice published by the board of the discovery, whichever is later. If any profits from a crime remain after the payment of claims made under this section, the board shall have the right to bring a civil action within two years in a court of competent jurisdiction to recover any payments made by the board pursuant to Article IV of the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.177, No.175), known as The Administrative Code of 1929, and any expenses incurred by the board pursuant to Article IV of The Administrative Code of 1929 or this section with regard to such crime or the person convicted of such crime.

(c)  Notice.--Upon filing an action under subsection (b), the eligible person shall give notice to the board of the filing by delivering a copy of the complaint to the board. The eligible person may also give notice to the board prior to filing the action so as to allow the board to apply for any appropriate remedies which are otherwise authorized to be invoked prior to the commencement of an action.

(d)  Responsibilities of board.--Upon receipt of a copy of a complaint, the board shall immediately take action as necessary to:

(1)  Notify all other known eligible persons of the alleged existence of profits from a crime by certified mail, return receipt requested, where the eligible persons' names and addresses are known by the board.

(2)  Publish, at least once a year for three years from the date it is initially notified by an eligible person under subsection (c), a legal notice in newspapers of general circulation in the county wherein the crime was committed and in counties contiguous to that county advising any eligible persons of the existence of profits from a crime. The board may in its discretion provide for additional notice as it deems necessary.

(3)  Avoid the wasting of the assets identified in the complaint as the newly discovered profits from a crime in any manner consistent with subsection (e).

(e)  Other remedies.--The board, acting on behalf of all eligible persons, shall have the right to apply for any and all remedies that are also otherwise available to an eligible person bringing an action under subsection (b). The remedies of attachment, injunction, receivership and notice of pendency available under law to an eligible person bringing an action under subsection (b) shall also be available to the board in all actions under this subsection. On a motion for a remedy, the moving party shall state whether any other remedy has previously been sought in the same action against the same defendant. The court may require the moving party to elect between those remedies to which it would otherwise be entitled.

(f)  Evasive action null and void.--Any action taken by any person convicted of a crime, whether by way of execution of a power of attorney, creation of corporate entities or otherwise, to defeat the purpose of this section shall be null and void as against the public policy of this Commonwealth.

(g)  Penalties.--

(1)  Any person who willfully fails to do any of the following is subject to a civil penalty of not less than $10,000 for each offense and not more than an amount equal to three times the contract amount:

(i)  submit to the board a copy of the contract described in subsection (a); or

(ii)  pay over to the board any moneys or other consideration as required by this section.

(2)  If two or more persons are subject to the penalties provided in this section, the persons shall be jointly and severally liable for the payment of the penalty imposed.

(3)  After notice and opportunity to be heard is provided, the board may by order assess the penalties described in this section.

(4)  If the penalties are not paid within 30 days from the date of the order, any penalty assessed under this section shall bear interest at the rate of 1% per month, compounded monthly.

(5)  An action to recover a civil penalty assessed under this section may be brought by the board in a court of competent jurisdiction within six years after the cause of action accrues.

(6)  Any moneys recovered under this subsection shall be paid into the Crime Victim's Compensation Fund.

(h)  Definitions.--As used in this section, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection:

"Board."  The Crime Victim's Compensation Board as defined in section 477 of the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.177, No.175), known as The Administrative Code of 1929.

"Convicted."  Includes conviction by entry of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, conviction after trial and a finding of not guilty due to insanity or of guilty but mentally ill.

"Eligible person."  Includes any of the following persons:

(1)  A victim of the particular crime in question, as "victim" is defined in section 479.1 of the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.177, No.175), known as The Administrative Code of 1929.

(2)  An intervenor in such crime.

(3)  A surviving spouse, parent or child of a deceased victim of or intervenor in such crime.

(4)  Any other person dependent for his principal support upon a deceased victim of or intervenor in such crime.

No person who is criminally responsible for the crime in question or was an accomplice of the person who is criminally responsible shall be an eligible person.

"Profit from a crime."  Includes any of the following:

(1)  Any property obtained through or income generated from the commission of a crime of which the defendant was convicted.

(2)  Any property obtained by or income generated from the sale, conversion or exchange of proceeds of a crime of which the defendant was convicted, including any gain realized by such sale, conversion or exchange.

(3)  Any property which the defendant obtained or income generated as a result of having committed the crime of which the defendant was convicted, including any assets obtained through the use of unique knowledge obtained during the commission of or in preparation for the commission of the crime, as well as any property obtained by or income generated from the sale, conversion or exchange of such property and any gain realized by such sale, conversion or exchange.

(May 3, 1995, 1st Sp.Sess., P.L.999, No.12, eff. imd.)

 

1995 Amendment.  Act 12, 1st Sp.Sess., added section 8312.

References in Text.  Sections 477 and 479.1 of the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.177, No.175), known as The Administrative Code of 1929, referred to in subsec. (h), were repealed by the act of November 24, 1998 (P.L.882, No.111), known as the Crime Victims Act. The subject matter is now contained in Act 111.

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