by Donna Martinez
Former Senior Writer and Editor, John Locke Foundation
It’s called federal asset sharing, and it puts innocent property owners at risk. That’s why JLF’s Jon Guze has released new in-depth analysis on preventing asset forfeiture abuse in North Carolina. Writes Jon:
Civil asset forfeiture is a legal process that empowers law enforcement agencies to confiscate property suspected of having been used for, or derived from, criminal activity. It is a civil action against the property itself, which results in cases with names like “United States v. $16,000”1 or “United States v. 7004 Calais Drive, Durham, NC.”2 The owner of the property need not be charged with, let alone convicted of, committing a crime. In fact, the owner need not even be a suspect, as Mary Ford, the owner of 7004 Calais Drive, discovered when her home was taken because her son was suspected of selling cocaine from the property.3
Federal asset sharing is a fascinating — and troubling — issue. Find out where North Carolina stands and take a look at the local agencies that are engaged in the practice. You’ll find all the data here.