Meanwhile, In Other News...AL Sheriffs & DAs: No Incentive to Enforce the Law if We Can’t Keep the $

Dave70968

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http://www.nationalreview.com/corne...-protect-property-rights-leading-backlash-das

AL Sheriffs & DAs: No Incentive to Enforce the Law if We Can’t Keep the Funds
Jibran Khan February 14, 2018 5:47 PM

In January, Republican state senators in Alabama introduced legislation to reform civil forfeiture. The bill makes the radical suggestion that property rights cannot be taken away without due process. (Under current practice, property can be seized without charge, let alone conviction, and the defendant needs to prove innocence at great cost to get it back.) It also aims to curb abuses by directing what does get seized to the state’s General Fund, rather than to the police departments themselves, thereby ending a practice that has been called ’Policing for Profit’.

The Alabama Sheriffs Association and Alabama District Attorney’s Association are not pleased. Taking to AL.com, the directors of both organizations penned an op-ed in defense of civil forfeiture. They open with blatant dishonesty, claiming that the practice only targets criminals, when in at least a quarter of Alabama forfeiture cases, charges are never filed, let alone convictions made.

The op-ed is actually refreshing in that the authors don’t hide the fact that police departments pursue civil forfeiture for personal gain. Speaking of the reformers’ plan to prevent police departments from keeping the money and assets they seize, they write:
sending the proceeds of forfeiture to the state’s General Fund would result in fewer busts of drug and stolen property rings. What incentive would local police and sheriffs have to invest manpower, resources and time in these operations if they don’t receive proceeds to cover their costs?​

Isn’t it the job of law enforcement to enforce the law? Isn’t that why they are paid? Given that many violent crimes happen in the absence of property on the scene to seize, does this mean that Alabama law enforcement have no incentive to spend resources fighting them?
 

dennishoddy

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I'm 100% against civil forfeiture unless there is 100% proof the money/property was obtained by illegal profits and a conviction has been obtained.
Even then, it should go through another court in another county/jurisdiction to look at the evidence again and make the determination that the state/fed/local can actually get the forfeited funds/property.
Then the property has to be immediately sold to the highest bidder.
The reason I say this is because one of our illustrious former DA's confiscated a home with a moderate ranch attached for drugs. The property was used as a home for multiple deputy's and as hunting ground for the same set for years.
It led to his removal from office in an election way down the road when it came out along with other transgressions of his.
 

C_Hallbert

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Seizure of funds and property have become all too routine based on the assumption that such funds and property are the fruits of ill gotten gains. Seizure is too often allowed based on appearances or circumstances without fully investigating whether it is justified. This can become a tempting source of funding for Police, Sheriffs, and District Attourney’s Offices. It is this citizen’s opinion that seizure and forfeiture should only be valid when proven to be illegally obtained.


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Dave70968

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We even have a procedure for forfeiture upon conviction: "criminal forfeiture." I don't have a problem with it.

Civil forfeiture--where the property itself is the defendant in the case, and confiscated as such--should be abolished outright.
 

C_Hallbert

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We even have a procedure for forfeiture upon conviction: "criminal forfeiture." I don't have a problem with it.

Civil forfeiture--where the property itself is the defendant in the case, and confiscated as such--should be abolished outright.

I have no problem if funds and property are proven to be obtained by or with monies obtained by criminal activities.


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