Code of Virginia

Code of Virginia
Title 4.1. Alcoholic Beverage Control Act
9/26/2020

Article 3. Procedural Matters.

§ 4.1-333. Interdiction of intoxicated driver.

A. When after a hearing upon due notice it appears to the satisfaction of the circuit court of any county or city that any person, residing within such county or city, has been convicted of driving any automobile, truck, motorcycle, engine, or train while intoxicated, the court may enter an order of interdiction prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages to such person until further ordered. The court entering any such order shall file a copy of the order with the Board.

B. The court entering any order of interdiction may alter, amend, or cancel such order as it deems proper. A copy of any alteration, amendment, or cancellation shall be filed with the Board.

Code 1950, § 4-51; 1956, c. 53; 1982, c. 66; 1993, c. 866; 2020, c. 150.

§ 4.1-334. Interdiction for illegal manufacture, possession, transportation or sale of alcoholic beverages.

When any person has been found guilty of the illegal manufacture, possession, transportation, or sale of alcoholic beverages or maintaining a common nuisance as defined in § 4.1-317, the court may without further notice or additional hearing enter an order of interdiction prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages to such person for one year from the date of the entry of the order, and thereafter if further ordered.

Code 1950, § 4-52; 1954, c. 484; 1982, c. 66; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-335. Enjoining nuisances.

A. In addition to the penalties imposed by § 4.1-317, the Board, its special agents, the attorney for the Commonwealth, or any citizen of the county, city, or town where a common nuisance as defined in § 4.1-317 exists may maintain a suit in equity in the name of the Commonwealth to enjoin the common nuisance.

B. The courts of equity shall have jurisdiction, and in every case where the bill charges, on the knowledge or belief of the complainant, and is sworn to by two reputable citizens, that alcoholic beverages are manufactured, stored, sold, dispensed, given away, or used in such house, building or other place described in § 4.1-317 contrary to the laws of the Commonwealth, an injunction shall be granted as soon as the bill is presented to the court. The injunction shall enjoin and restrain the owners, tenants, their agents, employees, servants, and any person connected with such house, building or other place, and all persons whomsoever from manufacturing, storing, selling, dispensing, giving away, or using alcoholic beverages on such premises. The injunction shall also restrain all persons from removing any alcoholic beverage then on such premises until the further order of the court. If the court is satisfied that the material allegations of the bill are true, although the premises complained of may not then be unlawfully used, it shall continue the injunction against such place for a period of time as the court deems proper. The injunction may be dissolved if a proper case is shown for dissolution.

Code 1950, § 4-82; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-336. Contraband beverages and other articles subject to forfeiture.

All stills and distilling apparatus and materials for the manufacture of alcoholic beverages, all alcoholic beverages and materials used in their manufacture, all containers in which alcoholic beverages may be found, which are kept, stored, possessed, or in any manner used in violation of the provisions of this title, and any dangerous weapons as described in § 18.2-308, which may be used, or which may be found upon the person or in any vehicle which such person is using, to aid such person in the unlawful manufacture, transportation or sale of alcoholic beverages, or found in the possession of such person, or any horse, mule or other beast of burden, any wagon, automobile, truck or vehicle of any nature whatsoever which is found in the immediate vicinity of any place where alcoholic beverages are being unlawfully manufactured and which such animal or vehicle is being used to aid in the unlawful manufacture, shall be deemed contraband and shall be forfeited to the Commonwealth.

Proceedings for the confiscation of the above property shall be in accordance with § 4.1-338 for all such property except motor vehicles which proceedings shall be in accordance with Chapter 22.1 (§ 19.2-386.1 et seq.) of Title 19.2.

Code 1950, § 4-53; 1954, c. 484; 1993, c. 866; 2012, cc. 283, 756.

§ 4.1-337. Search warrants.

A. If complaint on oath is made that alcoholic beverages are being manufactured, sold, kept, stored, or in any manner held, used or concealed in a particular house, or other place, in violation of law, the judge, magistrate, or other person having authority to issue criminal warrants, to whom such complaint is made, if satisfied that there is a probable cause for such belief, shall issue a warrant to search such house or other place for alcoholic beverages. Such warrants, except as herein otherwise provided, shall be issued, directed and executed in accordance with the laws of the Commonwealth pertaining to search warrants.

B. Warrants issued under this title for the search of any automobile, boat, conveyance or vehicle, whether of like kind or not, or for the search of any article of baggage, whether of like kind or not, for alcoholic beverages, may be executed in any part of the Commonwealth where they are overtaken and shall be made returnable before any judge within whose jurisdiction such automobile, boat, conveyance, vehicle, truck, or article of baggage, or any of them, was transported or attempted to be transported contrary to law.

Code 1950, § 4-54; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-338. Confiscation proceedings; disposition of forfeited articles.

A. All proceedings for the confiscation of articles, except motor vehicles, declared contraband and forfeited to the Commonwealth under this chapter shall be as provided in this section.

B. Production of seized property. -- Whenever any article declared contraband under the provisions of this title and required to be forfeited to the Commonwealth has been seized, with or without a warrant, by any officer charged with the enforcement of this title, he shall produce the contraband article and any person in whose possession it was found. In those cases where no person is found in possession of such articles the return shall so state and a copy of the warrant shall be posted on the door of the buildings or room where the articles were found, or if there is no door, then in any conspicuous place upon the premises.

In case of seizure of a still, doubler, worm, worm tub, mash tub, fermenting tub, or other distilling apparatus, for any offense involving their forfeiture, where it is impracticable to remove such distilling apparatus to a place of safe storage from the place where seized, the seizing officer may destroy such apparatus only as necessary to prevent use of all or any part thereof for the purpose of distilling. The destruction shall be in the presence of at least one credible witness, and such witness shall join the officer in a sworn report of the seizure and destruction, to be made to the Board. The report shall set forth the grounds of the claim of forfeiture, the reasons for seizure and destruction, an estimate of the fair cash value of the apparatus destroyed, and the materials remaining after such destruction. The report shall include a statement that, from facts within their own knowledge, the seizing officer and witness have no doubt whatever that the distilling apparatus was set up for use, or had been used in the unlawful distillation of spirits, and that it was impracticable to remove such apparatus to a place of safe storage.

In case of seizure of any quantity of mash, or of alcoholic beverages on which the tax imposed by the laws of the United States has not been paid, for any offense involving forfeiture of the same, the seizing officer may destroy them to prevent the use of all or any part thereof for the purpose of unlawful distillation of spirits or any other violation of this title. The destruction shall be in the presence of at least one credible witness, and such witness shall join the officer in a sworn report of the seizure and destruction, to be made to the Board. The report shall set forth the grounds of the claim of forfeiture, the reasons for seizure and destruction, and a statement that, from facts within their own knowledge, the seizing officer and witness have no doubt whatever that the mash was intended for use in the unlawful distillation of spirits, or that the alcoholic beverages were intended for use in violation of this title.

C. Hearing and determination. -- Upon the return of the warrant as provided in this section, the court shall fix a time not less than ten days, unless waived by the accused in writing, and not more than thirty days thereafter, for the hearing on such return to determine whether or not the articles seized, or any part thereof, were used or in any manner kept, stored or possessed in violation of this title.

At such hearing if no claimant appears, the court shall declare the articles seized forfeited to the Commonwealth and, if such articles are not necessary as evidence in any pending prosecution, shall turn them over to the Board. Any person claiming an interest in any of the articles seized may appear at the hearing and file a written claim setting forth particularly the character and extent of his interest. The court shall certify the warrant and the articles seized along with any claim filed to the circuit court to hear and determine the validity of such claim.

If the evidence warrants, the court shall enter a judgment of forfeiture and order the articles seized to be turned over to the Board. Action under this section and the forfeiture of any articles hereunder shall not be a bar to any prosecution under any other provision of this title.

D. Disposition of forfeited beverages and other articles. -- Any articles forfeited to the Commonwealth and turned over to the Board in accordance with this section shall be destroyed or sold by the Board as it deems proper. The net proceeds from such sales shall be paid into the Literary Fund. If the Board believes that any alcoholic beverages forfeited to the Commonwealth and turned over to the Board in accordance with this section cannot be sold and should not be destroyed, it may give such alcoholic beverages for medicinal purposes to any institution in the Commonwealth regularly conducted as a hospital, nursing home or sanatorium for the care of persons in ill health, or as a home devoted exclusively to the care of aged people, to supply the needs of such institution for alcoholic beverages for such purposes, provided that (i) the State Health Commissioner has issued a certificate stating that such institution has need for such alcoholic beverages and (ii) preference is accorded by the Board to institutions supported either in whole or in part by public funds. A record shall be made showing the amount issued in each case, to whom issued and the date when issued, and shall be kept in the offices of the State Health Commissioner and the Board. No charge shall be made to any patient for the alcoholic beverages supplied to him where they have been received from the Board pursuant to this section. Such alcoholic beverages shall be administered only upon approval of the patient's physician.

If the Board believes that any foodstuffs forfeited to the Commonwealth and turned over to the Board in accordance with this section are usable, should not be destroyed and cannot be sold or whose sale would be impractical, it may give such foodstuffs to any institution in the Commonwealth and shall prefer a gift to the local jail or other local correctional facility in the jurisdiction where seizure took place. A record shall be made showing the nature of the foodstuffs and amount given, to whom given and the date when given, and shall be kept in the offices of the Board.

Code 1950, § 4-55; 1954, c. 484; 1958, c. 194; 1976, c. 37; 1993, c. 866; 1995, c. 196.

§ 4.1-339. Search and seizure of conveyances or vehicles used in violation of law; arrests.

A. When any officer charged with the enforcement of the alcoholic beverage control laws of the Commonwealth has reason to believe that alcoholic beverages illegally acquired, or being illegally transported, are in any conveyance or vehicle of any kind, either on land or on water (except a conveyance or vehicle owned or operated by a railroad, express, sleeping or parlor car or steamboat company, other than barges, tugs or small craft), he shall obtain a search warrant and search such conveyance or vehicle. If illegally acquired alcoholic beverages or alcoholic beverages being illegally transported in amounts in excess of one quart or one liter if in a metric-sized container are found, the officer shall seize the alcoholic beverages, seize and take possession of such conveyance or vehicle, and deliver them to the chief law-enforcement officer of the locality in which such seizure was made, taking his receipt therefor in duplicate.

B. The officer making such seizure shall also arrest all persons found in charge of such conveyance or vehicle and shall forthwith report in writing such seizure and arrest to the attorney for the Commonwealth for the county or city in which seizure and arrest were made.

Code 1950, § 4-56; 1954, c. 504; 1968, c. 763; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 155; 1973, c. 16; 1978, cc. 434, 436; 1981, c. 365; 1983, c. 271; 1984, c. 52; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-340. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2012, cc. 283 and 756, cl. 2.

§ 4.1-346. Contraband beverages.

Alcoholic beverages seized pursuant to § 4.1-339 shall be deemed contraband as provided in § 4.1-336 and disposed of accordingly. Failure to maintain on a conveyance or vehicle a permit or other indicia of permission issued by the Board authorizing the transportation of alcoholic beverages within, into or through the Commonwealth when other Board regulations applicable to such transportation have been complied with shall not be cause for deeming such alcoholic beverages contraband.

Code 1950, § 4-56; 1954, c. 504; 1968, c. 763; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 155; 1973, c. 16; 1978, cc. 434, 436; 1981, c. 365; 1983, c. 271; 1984, c. 52; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-347. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2012, cc. 283 and 756, cl. 2.

§ 4.1-348. Beverages not licensed under this title.

The provisions of §§ 4.1-339 through 4.1-348 shall not apply to alcoholic beverages which may be manufactured and sold without any license under the provisions of this title.

Code 1950, § 4-56; 1954, c. 504; 1968, c. 763; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 155; 1973, c. 16; 1978, cc. 434, 436; 1981, c. 365; 1983, c. 271; 1984, c. 52; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-349. Punishment for violations of title or regulations; bond.

A. Any person convicted of a misdemeanor under the provisions of this title without specification as to the class of offense or penalty, or convicted of violating any other provision thereof, or convicted of violating any Board regulation, shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

B. In addition to the penalties imposed by this title for violations, any court before whom any person is convicted of a violation of any provision of this title may require such defendant to execute bond, with approved security, in the penalty of not more than $1,000, with the condition that the defendant will not violate any of the provisions of this title for the term of one year. If any such bond is required and is not given, the defendant shall be committed to jail until it is given, or until he is discharged by the court, provided he shall not be confined for a period longer than six months. If any such bond required by a court is not given during the term of the court by which conviction is had, it may be given before any judge or before the clerk of such court.

C. The provisions of this title shall not prevent the Board from suspending, revoking or refusing to continue the license of any person convicted of a violation of any provision of this title.

D. No court shall hear such a case unless the respective attorney for the Commonwealth or his assistant has been notified that such a case is pending.

Code 1950, § 4-92; 1984, c. 603; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-350. Witness not excused from testifying because of self-incrimination.

No person shall be excused from testifying for the Commonwealth as to any offense committed by another under this title by reason of his testimony tending to incriminate him. The testimony given by such person on behalf of the Commonwealth when called as a witness for the prosecution shall not be used against him and he shall not be prosecuted for the offense to which he testifies.

Code 1950, § 4-94; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-351. Previous convictions.

In any indictment, information or warrant charging any person with a violation of any provision of this title, it may be alleged and evidence may be introduced at the trial of such person to prove that such person has been previously convicted of a violation of this title.

Code 1950, § 4-91; 1993, c. 866.

§ 4.1-352. Certificate of forensic scientist as evidence; requiring forensic scientist to appear.

The certificate of any forensic scientist employed by the Commonwealth on behalf of the Board or the Department of Forensic Science, when signed by him, shall be evidence in all prosecutions for violations of this title and all controversies in any judicial proceedings touching the mixture analyzed by him. On motion of the accused or any party in interest, the court may require the forensic scientist making the analysis to appear as a witness and be subject to cross-examination, provided such motion is made within a reasonable time prior to the day on which the case is set for trial.

Code 1950, § 4-90; 1972, c. 741; 1981, c. 410; 1993, c. 866; 2003, c. 130; 2005, cc. 868, 881.

§ 4.1-353. Label on sealed container prima facie evidence of alcoholic content.

In any prosecution for violations of this title, where a sealed container is labeled as containing an alcoholic beverage as defined herein, such labeling shall be prima facie evidence of the alcoholic content of the container. Nothing shall preclude the introduction of other relevant evidence to establish the alcoholic content of a container, whether sealed or not.

1962, c. 616, § 4-90.1; 1993, cc. 169, 866; 1997, c. 418.

§ 4.1-354. No recovery for alcoholic beverages illegally sold.

No action to recover the price of any alcoholic beverages sold in contravention of this title may be maintained.

Code 1950, § 4-88; 1993, c. 866.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of these sections may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.

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