Institute For Justice Publishes New Edition of Policing For ProfitBy Adam Bates
Cato @ Liberty
Nov. 12, 2015
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Yesterday, the Institute for Justice, which has long been a leader in the fight against the abusive practice of civil asset forfeiture, released a new edition of its important 2010 study Policing for Profit.
Civil asset forfeiture has been with us for centuries, but the Drug War has kicked the government's incentives to seize property without charge or trial into high gear. Federal seizures alone have gone from tens of millions to billions of dollars a year over the last generation, while the vast majority of states still use a deficient and abusive process to take private property from citizens who haven't been charged with any wrongdoing.
Thanks to the work of organizations like IJ, journalist exposés of numerous egregious abuses, and legislators committed to the rule of law, several states have reformed their forfeiture laws. But as the new report shows, the work is far from finished, and, despite a pledge to reform, the federal government continues to undermine state reforms while seizing billions of dollars on its own.
The key findings of the report include:
IJ also released an excellent video to summarize their findings:
Policing for Profit Visualized: How Big Is Civil Forfeiture?
The full report can be found here. How does your state stack up?
For Cato's explainer on the issues and abuses inherent in civil asset forfeiture, click here.