Nearly half a million dollars seized by the FBI during its investigation of Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price are headed for civil forfeiture proceedings over the protestations of Price and his top aide, Dapheny Fain.
Both say the thick stacks of $100 bills -- confiscated from a safe in Price's Lake Cliff home and from the sale of property on Grady Niblo Road to a developer in 2011-- are the proceeds of business transactions made on the up-and-up. The government says it's all dirty money, accumulated through money laundering, pay-for-play schemes and bankruptcy fraud. Both Price and Fain have asked U.S. District Judge Sidney A. Fitzwater to hold off until the Feds complete their criminal investigation into his activities.
Fitzwater denied their motions to delay forfeiture proceedings Monday, citing their failure to file answers to the government's complaint. It isn't enough, he writes, to simply lay claim to the cash. He also denied Fain's request for a 90-day extension to file an answer. You can read the ruling after the jump.