It's Time We Start Calling 'Civil Asset Forfeiture' What It Really Is -- 'Armed Robbery by Police'By Eva Decesare
The Free Thought Project
Dec. 30, 2015
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Three years ago a couple was stopped by an armed gang and robbed of over $100,000. The facts are not in dispute. The perpetrators are known. And yet the criminals have not been punished, and the property has not been recovered. Why? Because the perpetrators wear badges.
Since late 2012, when Adam and Jennifer Perry were robbed by the Illinois State Police, they have been trying to retrieve their stolen property. It has been a challenge, however, because when "law enforcers" rob you, it's not (according to them) a crime.
The Perry's were pulled over for speeding on I-80 in Henry County, Illinois, on their way to see a specialist about Adam's ear infection. When a police dog "indicated" to the vehicle (something dogs can easily be trained to do on command, yet something that police claim is "probable cause" to do a search), police searched the car, without a warrant or consent.
Between Jennifer's wallet and a suitcase in the vehicle, police found $107,520 in cash, which the police promptly stole. Law enforcers like to refer to such things as "seizures," but since the cash was neither evidence of a crime, nor was it contraband, to use the legal term ("seizure") is dishonest and inaccurate. Nothing illegal was found in the vehicle, and the Perrys were never charged with any crime. So the correct term for what the police did is "armed robbery." (The Illinois State thieves eventually handed over the stolen loot to a bigger gang of thieves, the federal government.) And such highway robbery is not at all uncommon.
It is standard operating procedure for badge-wearing pirates to simply allege that money might be connected to something illegal (like narcotics), and then steal the money based on a wild guess. In a direct, obvious violation of the "due process" clause of the Fifth Amendment, victims of such robbery must then prove their innocence in order to have any chance of retrieving their stolen property. The state thugs don't need to prove anything.
Aside from the cash, police also stole the family's Toyota Tundra.
"I even begged and said please just give me my truck back and you can keep the money and ill (sic) walk away from it. Still denied," Mr. Perry wrote in a letter to the court. "You don't understand the emotional, physical and financial terrorism you have caused."
In spite of being robbed at gunpoint by agents of the state, the couple remains resolute in the notion that they are not required to prove their innocence to get their money back.
"This is not Nazi Germany where you can treat people like this," he wrote.
According to the Washington Post, one federal "civil forfeiture" program included almost 62,000 examples of direct robbery (over 1,700 of them in Illinois), in situations where there was no warrant, and the owners of the cash were not charged with any crime. When you have badge-wearing pirates routinely committing armed robbery against thousands of Americans, with no charges and no trial, it becomes undeniable who the Bullies in Blue really "protect and serve." And it isn't you.