Code Section Group

Penal Code - PEN


  ( Part 4 added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 1385. )


  ( Title 1 added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 1385. )

CHAPTER 3. Prevention and Abatement of Unlawful Activities [11200 - 11482]

  ( Chapter 3 added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35. )

ARTICLE 1. Unlawful Liquor Sale Abatement Law [11200 - 11207]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35. )


Every building or place used for the purpose of unlawfully selling, serving or giving away any spirituous, vinous, malt or other alcoholic liquor, and every building or place in or upon which such liquors are unlawfully sold, served or given away, is a nuisance which shall be enjoined, abated and prevented, whether it is a public or private nuisance.

(Added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35.)


Whenever there is reason to believe that a nuisance as defined in this article is kept, maintained or exists in any county, the district attorney, in the name of the people of the State of California, shall, or the city attorney of an incorporated city, or any citizen of the state resident within the county, in his or her own name may, maintain an action in equity to abate and prevent the nuisance and to perpetually enjoin the person or persons conducting or maintaining it, and the owner, lessee or agent of the building, or place, in or upon which the nuisance exists, from directly or indirectly maintaining or permitting it.

The complaint in the action shall be verified unless filed by the district attorney.

(Amended by Stats. 1987, Ch. 1076, Sec. 5.)


Whenever the existence of a nuisance is shown in an action brought under this article to the satisfaction of the court or judge thereof, either by verified complaint or affidavit, and the court or judge is satisfied that the owner of the property has received written notice of the existence of the nuisance, signed by the complainant or the district attorney at least two weeks prior to the filing of the complaint, the court or judge shall allow a temporary writ of injunction to abate and prevent the continuance or recurrence of the nuisance. On granting such writ the court or judge shall require an undertaking on the part of the applicant to the effect that the applicant will pay to the party enjoined such damages, not exceeding an amount to be specified, as the opposing party may sustain by reason of the injunction, if the court finally decides that the applicant was not entitled to the injunction.

(Amended by Stats. 1982, Ch. 517, Sec. 319.)


Actions brought under this article shall have precedence over all other actions, excepting criminal proceedings, election contests and hearings on injunctions. If a complaint is filed under this article by a citizen, it shall not be dismissed by the plaintiff or for want of prosecution except upon a sworn statement made by the complainant and his attorney, setting forth the reasons why the action should be dismissed, and the dismissal ordered by the court. In case of failure to prosecute any such action with reasonable diligence, or at the request of the plaintiff, the court, in its discretion, may substitute any other citizen consenting thereto for the plaintiff. If the action is brought by a citizen and the court finds there was no reasonable ground or cause therefor, the costs shall be taxed against such citizen.

(Added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35.)


If the existence of a nuisance is established in an action as provided in this article, an order of abatement shall be entered as part of the judgment in the case, and plaintiff’s costs in such action are a lien upon the building and place, enforceable and collectible by execution issued by order of the court.

(Added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35.)


Any violation or disobedience of an injunction or order expressly provided for in this article is punishable as a contempt of court by a fine of not less than two hundred dollars ($200) nor more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by imprisonment in the county jail for not less than one nor more than six months, or by both.

(Added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35.)


Whenever the owner of a building or place upon which an act or acts constituting a contempt as defined in this article has been committed is guilty of a contempt of court, and is fined therefor in any proceedings under this article, the fine is a lien upon such building and place to the extent of the interest of such person therein, enforceable and collectible by execution issued by order of the court.

(Added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 35.)


“Person,” as used in this article, means individuals, corporations, associations, partnerships, limited liability companies, trustees, lessees, agents and assignees.

(Amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 1010, Sec. 199. Effective January 1, 1995.)

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