LYNN HAVEN, Fla. (WMBB) — On Tuesday, a federal grand jury indicted five people of creating an elaborate scheme, robbing the federal government out of five million dollars in disaster recovery money.
The case reportedly took place in the city of Lynn Haven.
Authorities seized more than two-dozen vehicles and two parcels of land allegedly bought with the illegal profits. The two pieces of land agree located in Youngstown.
Although the federal government now has the land and vehicles, their ultimate fate depends on the outcome of the case.
News 13 spoke with a local attorney, Al Sauline, to get more insight into what it means for a piece of property to be considered a forfeiture.
“If the agreement with the plea or the jury panel found that the person did, in fact, obtain these so that they are a forfeiture type item, that’s really up to the federal government. Sometimes they hold on to them and use the vehicles, or boats or jet skis for DEA or matters of that nature of they could sell those assets in an effort to help provide money back to the federal government or whoever the victim is in the case,” Sauline said.
If the persons are found not guilty, the items could be returned to them.