The Department of Justice has announced that it will be ending its Equitable Sharing Program. The Washington Post reports that the Equitable Sharing Program “has enabled local and state police to make seizures and then have them ‘adopted’ by federal agencies, which share in the proceeds. The program allowed police departments and drug task forces to keep up to 80 percent of the proceeds of the adopted seizures, with the rest going to federal agencies.”
The end of this federal program is a good step in the right
direction. Though, there are some exceptions
to the no seizure rule and police can still seize private property
under their own state laws.
Civil asset forfeiture laws have allowed police departments to
seize private property from people suspected of a crime, sell it for
profit, and use the proceeds to fund their operation.The real kicker
is that one does not technically need to be convicted of a crime or
even arrested to permanently lose their property.