21 U.S. Code § 334 - Seizure
The article, equipment, or other thing proceeded against shall be liable to seizure by process pursuant to the libel, and the procedure in cases under this section shall conform, as nearly as may be, to the procedure in admiralty; except that on demand of either party any issue of fact joined in any such case shall be tried by jury. When libel for condemnation proceedings under this section, involving the same claimant and the same issues of adulteration or misbranding, are pending in two or more jurisdictions, such pending proceedings, upon application of the claimant seasonably made to the court of one such jurisdiction, shall be consolidated for trial by order of such court, and tried in (1) any district selected by the claimant where one of such proceedings is pending; or (2) a district agreed upon by stipulation between the parties. If no order for consolidation is so made within a reasonable time, the claimant may apply to the court of one such jurisdiction and such court (after giving the United States attorney for such district reasonable notice and opportunity to be heard) shall by order, unless good cause to the contrary is shown, specify a district of reasonable proximity to the claimant’s principal place of business, in which all such pending proceedings shall be consolidated for trial and tried. Such order of consolidation shall not apply so as to require the removal of any case the date for trial of which has been fixed. The court granting such order shall give prompt notification thereof to the other courts having jurisdiction of the cases covered thereby.
The court at any time after seizure up to a reasonable time before trial shall by order allow any party to a condemnation proceeding, his attorney or agent, to obtain a representative sample of the article seized and a true copy of the analysis, if any, on which the proceeding is based and the identifying marks or numbers, if any, of the packages from which the samples analyzed were obtained.
When a decree of condemnation is entered against the article, court costs and fees, and storage and other proper expenses, shall be awarded against the person, if any, intervening as claimant of the article.
An officer or qualified employee of the Food and Drug Administration may order the detention, in accordance with this subsection, of any article of food that is found during an inspection, examination, or investigation under this chapter conducted by such officer or qualified employee, if the officer or qualified employee has reason to believe that such article is adulterated or misbranded.
An article of food may be ordered detained under subparagraph (A) only if the Secretary or an official designated by the Secretary approves the order. An official may not be so designated unless the official is the director of the district under this chapter in which the article involved is located, or is an official senior to such director.
An article of food may be detained under paragraph (1) for a reasonable period, not to exceed 20 days, unless a greater period, not to exceed 30 days, is necessary, to enable the Secretary to institute an action under subsection (a) or section 332 of this title. The Secretary shall by regulation provide for procedures for instituting such action on an expedited basis with respect to perishable foods.
An order under paragraph (1) with respect to an article of food may require that such article be labeled or marked as detained, and shall require that the article be removed to a secure facility, as appropriate. An article subject to such an order shall not be transferred by any person from the place at which the article is ordered detained, or from the place to which the article is so removed, as the case may be, until released by the Secretary or until the expiration of the detention period applicable under such order, whichever occurs first. This subsection may not be construed as authorizing the delivery of the article pursuant to the execution of a bond while the article is subject to the order, and section 381(b) of this title does not authorize the delivery of the article pursuant to the execution of a bond while the article is subject to the order.
With respect to an article of food ordered detained under paragraph (1), any person who would be entitled to be a claimant for such article if the article were seized under subsection (a) may appeal the order to the Secretary. Within five days after such an appeal is filed, the Secretary, after providing opportunity for an informal hearing, shall confirm or terminate the order involved, and such confirmation by the Secretary shall be considered a final agency action for purposes of section 702 of title 5. If during such five-day period the Secretary fails to provide such an opportunity, or to confirm or terminate such order, the order is deemed to be terminated.
Notwithstanding any other provision of Federal law, in implementing this section, the Secretary shall only promulgate regulations as described in paragraph (1).
2012—Subsec. (g)(1). Pub. L. 112–144, § 709(a)(1), inserted “, drug,” after “device” wherever appearing.
Subsec. (g)(2)(A). Pub. L. 112–144, § 709(a)(2), inserted “, drug,” after “(B), a device”.
Subsec. (g)(2)(B). Pub. L. 112–144, § 709(a)(3), inserted “or drug” after “device” in introductory provisions and in cl. (ii).
Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 112–144, § 709(b)(2), added subsec. (i).
2011—Subsec. (h)(1)(A). Pub. L. 111–353 substituted “reason to believe” for “credible evidence or information indicating” and “is adulterated or misbranded” for “presents a threat of serious adverse health consequences or death to humans or animals”.
2009—Subsec. (a)(2)(E). Pub. L. 111–31, § 103(d)(1), added cl. (E).
Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 111–31, § 103(d)(2), inserted “tobacco product,” after “device,” in first sentence.
Subsec. (g)(1). Pub. L. 111–31, § 103(d)(3), inserted “or tobacco product” after “device” wherever appearing.
Subsec. (g)(2)(A). Pub. L. 111–31, § 103(d)(4), inserted “or tobacco product” after “device” in introductory provisions.
2007—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 110–85 substituted “section 331(ll), 344, or 355” for “section 344 or 355”.
2002—Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 107–188 added subsec. (h).
1997—Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 105–115 substituted “subparagraphs (A) and (B) of section 381(e)(1) of this title” for “paragraphs (1) and (2) of section 381(e) of this title” and inserted “Any person seeking to export an imported article pursuant to any of the provisions of this subsection shall establish that the article was intended for export at the time the article entered commerce.” before “Any article condemned by reason”.
1993—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 103–80, § 3(f)(1), substituted “found. No libel” for “found: Provided, however, That no libel”.
Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 103–80, § 3(f)(2), substituted “sold. After entry” for “sold: Provided, That after entry”, “met. The provisions of this sentence” for “met: Provided, however, That the provisions of this sentence”, “title. Where such exportation” for “title: And provided further, That where such exportation”, and “the preceding sentence shall not be applicable” for “the foregoing proviso shall not be applicable”.
1992—Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 102–300 substituted “381(e)” for “381(d)” in three places and “paragraphs” for “clauses” before “(1) and (2) of section 381(e)”.
1976—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 94–295, § 3(c)(1), struck out “device,” after “Any article of food, drug,”.
Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 94–295, § 3(c)(2), (3), added cl. (D) covering adulterated or misbranded devices.
Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 94–278 added par. (3).
Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 94–295, § 7(a), added subsec. (g).
1970—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 91–513, § 701(c), struck out cls. (A) and (D) which dealt with depressant or stimulant drugs, struck out reference to depressant or stimulant drugs in cl. (C), and redesignated cls. (B), (C), and (E) as cls. (A), (B), and (C), respectively.
Subsec. (d)(3)(iii). Pub. L. 91–513, § 701(d), struck out reference to depressant or stimulant drugs.
1968—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 90–639 inserted references to the United States courts of Territories.
1965—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 89–74, § 6(a), designated existing provisions as par. (1), redesignated cls. (1) and (2) of proviso as (A) and (B), and added par. (2).
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 89–74, § 6(b)(1), inserted “equipment, or other thing proceeded against” after “article” in first sentence.
Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 89–74, § 6(b)(2), designated existing provisions as par. (1), redesignated cls. (1) and (2) of the second sentence thereof as (A) and (B), and added pars. (2) and (3).
1957—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 85–250 permitted, under certain circumstances, reexportation of articles condemned at places other than original port of entry.
1953—Subsec. (c). Act Aug. 7, 1953, provided that a true copy of the analysis in any case shall be furnished the owner.
1948—Subsec. (a). Act June 24, 1948, inserted “or while held for sale (whether or not the first sale) after shipment in interstate commerce” to make this subsection coextensive with section 331(k) of this title.
[Final regulation issued May 29, 2014, effective June 30, 2014. See 79 F.R. 30716.]
Amendment by Pub. L. 91–513 effective on first day of seventh calendar month that begins after Oct. 26, 1970, see section 704 of Pub. L. 91–513, set out as an Effective Date note under section 801 of this title.
Amendment by Pub. L. 90–639 applicable only with respect to violations of this chapter committed after Oct. 24, 1968, see section 6 of Pub. L. 90–639, set out as an Effective Date of 1968 Amendments; Transitional Provisions note under section 321 of this title.
Amendment by Pub. L. 91–513 not to affect or abate any prosecutions for any violation of law or any civil seizures or forfeitures and injunctive proceedings commenced prior to the effective date of such amendment, and all administrative proceedings pending before the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs [now the Drug Enforcement Administration] on Oct. 27, 1970, to be continued and brought to final determination in accord with laws and regulations in effect prior to Oct. 27, 1970, see section 702 of Pub. L. 91–513, set out as a note under section 321 of this title.
Nothing in amendment by Pub. L. 111–353 to be construed to alter jurisdiction and authorities established under certain other Acts or in a manner inconsistent with international agreements to which the United States is a party, see sections 2251 and 2252 of this title.
For transfer of functions of Federal Security Administrator to Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare [now Health and Human Services], and of Food and Drug Administration in the Department of Agriculture to Federal Security Agency, see notes set out under section 321 of this title.
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