Senator Tommy Williams
P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0104

February 23, 2009
Contact: 512-463-0104

Bill gives Attorney General authority to seize illegal profits

Today, Senator Williams (R-The Woodlands) filed legislation which would grant the Attorney General the power to seize crime syndicates' illegal profits and other resources.

SB 1065, The Texas Racketeering and Corruption Act, or TexRAC, will provide the Texas Attorney General with a new civil tool to go directly after organized crime's resources – their money and their property.

"Organized crime operations like the Texas Mexican Mafia, Barrio Azteca, Tango Blast and others engage in human trafficking, drug trafficking, firearm trafficking, prostitution and other illegal activities," said Sen. Williams. "I want to be sure Texas has all the necessary criminal and civil tools to fight these despicable, illegal activities. It's time we tell these syndicates that Texas does not welcome their business."

TexRAC would allow the Attorney General to seek court orders to seize criminals' property and freeze their assets. It also creates a new second degree felony offense punishable by between two and ten years in prison. Criminal enterprises which harm children would face a third degree felony, punishable by between two and twenty years in prison.

"Law enforcement should not have to fight criminal enterprises with one hand tied behind their back." added Williams. "SB 1065 will allow the Attorney General to utilize our civil courts to recover the syndicates' money, property and other resources."

Senator Williams represents Senate District 4 covering all or portions of Jefferson, Orange, Chambers, Liberty, Harris and Montgomery Counties. Williams serves as Chairman of the Senate Administration Committee and as a member of the Finance, Education and International Relations & Trade.