Judge orders strippers $1 million cash life savings returned with interest…one year after state trooper confiscated it as drugs money
By James Nye Daily Mail PUBLISHED: 23 July 2013
Exotic dancer, Tasha Mishra, 33, of Rancho Cucamonga, will be reunited with $1,074,900 plus interest, after Judge Joseph F. Batailon today found no evidence that the money was to be used in a drug dealing operation.
The million dollar fortune had been amassed by Mishra over the course of 15 years and was intended by her to be used to buy a nightclub in New Jersey and get her out of the stripping business.
Nebraksa State troopers confiscated the cash on March 3rd 2012 when they pulled over Rajesh and Marina Dheri, of Montville, New Jersey, for speeding according to court documents.
The Dheri’s are friends of Mishra and had been handed the cash by Mishra two days earlier and they were transporting the money across the country after flying into Los Angeles to meet the millionaire dancer.
Nebraska State Patrol Trooper Ryan Hayes issued Rajesh Dheri with a speeding ticket and then asked the couple if they were carrying anything illegal in the car such as drugs.
The Dheri’s said no and gave Hayes permission to search the Mercedes SUV they had rented two days prior.
The troopers discovered two drawstring bags containing rubber-banded bundles of cash in $100s and then seized it, believing it was related to narcotics.
The Dheri’s told the troopers that the money was for a nightclub that they and a friend were to buy in New Jersey but a drug sniffing dog found traces of narcotics on the money.
Beginning almost a year-long legal fight to reclaim the money, Mishra told the court in May that the money was her life savings from stripping in Southern California.
‘In any event, that claimant Tara Mishra earned her money by lap dancing and nude dancing does not mean that a Nebraska State Trooper can take her life savings,’ Mishra’s attorney Roger Diamond told the Journal Star.
U.S. attorney Nancy Svoboda said that in any event there was probable cause to believe that in the ‘commonsense view of the realities of normal life, it was probable the money was either earned by and being used for illegal drug trade.’
Judge Bataillon ruled otherwise after Mishra provided evidence of earnings on tax returns and paper details of the agreement to buy the bar in new Jersey.
Bataillon criticized the Nebraska State Troopers for destroying the money to convert it into a check – pointing out that with that all evidence of any relation to drugs had gone.
‘For all the court knows, there is a 90 percent chance that all money is drug tainted,’ the judge said.
In general, Bataillon said, the government ‘left too many unanswered questions and had a general failure of proof in this case.’ – according to the Journal Star.
He directed the government to return the money, plus interest since the day it was
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2375676/Judge-orders-strippers-1-million-cash-life-savings-returned–year-state-trooper-confiscated-drugs-money.html#ixzz2ZwWhI89h
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