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Why we need to eliminate Civil Asset Forfeiture

US Customs stole a man’s truck because he forgot about some ammo in his glove box. He’s not been charged with a crime.

This is a good start but it needs to go further:

The Republican-led House of Representatives approved three amendments to a large spending bill Tuesday that would attempt to block Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ civil asset forfeiture directive.

In July, Sessions announced he was ending restrictions put in place by former attorney general Eric Holder on when federal law enforcement could “adopt” asset forfeiture cases from state and local police.

2 Responses to “Why we need to eliminate Civil Asset Forfeiture”

  1. Deaf Smith Says:

    Well there is more to the story. He photographed the agents at the checkpoint. They did NOT like that. Then he refused to hand over the phone and the passcode to it. Then he got uppity with them and said he would rather go to jail once they found the 5 rounds in a .380 mag. Etc. He raised the stakes and they did not back down. The stakes got higher.. and higher.

    Now the Custom Service cannot back down (and lose face) so this will drag on in court.

  2. lucusloc Says:

    @Deaf Smith

    None of that matters, as he was well within his rights every step of the way. It was customs that escalated the situation at every point.

    At the very most they had a right to seize the 5 rounds of ammo, but even at that point a properly functioning government would have left the decision of what to do with the ammo up to the owner (dump it, mail it home or run the risk of illegal possession in a foreign country).

    It is not even an amount that could be said to be “trafficked”. Ammo is not an endangered animal, where possession of even one is enough to show participation in an illegal trade. Ammo is common and legal in this country, so it can be assumed that most people could accidentally have small amounts on their person when heading to places where it may be illegal. It would be about the same as accusing someone of trainspotting cash of money laundering (which is a real excuse used by police to justify CAF in some cases).

    Law enforcement should know this, and treat it’s discovery as a point of education for the citizen, not a criminal act. CAF is a violation of our constitutional rights, plain and simple, and this act was an egregious abuse of power no matter how you look at it.

    The policy should be banned, and the people exercising it should be charged with violation of civil liberties under the color of law, and never allowed to work in law enforcement again.