A Solution For Dealing With Civil Asset Forfeiture Abuse

As I noted early in the presidential process in 2015, I believed civil asset forfeiture was a good subject for the 3 or 4 serious presidential candidates to focus on. And a public that is justifiably suspicious (at best) of the meddling nature of the federal leviathan? Well, they would almost certainly find civil asset forfeiture reform to be of interest to them as well.

Image result for civil asset forfeiture

I suggest stricter rules are needed in this area. However, the importance of removing any temptation to harass citizens without just cause for doing so is also needed. The only targets for civil asset forfeiture as a rule should be folks who are formally charged with a crime. The principle here is simple: the government has no business meddling in the affairs of private citizens. To dissuade government agents from violating this principle, there should be an appropriate penalty so here is what I suggest:

If someone not formally charged with a crime has assets seized, the government should reimburse them 300% and whomever screwed up either gets fired or (at a minimum) a 50% pay cut!

The benefit of the doubt should always lay with private citizens along with the presumption of innocence, not with the government and its agents “erect[ing]a multitude of New Offices, and send[ing] hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.”{2} And as the only way meddling bureaucrats will learn is to be given sufficient penalties to dissuade them from abusing their functions, the aforementioned ones should suffice.

Every rule admits of exceptions however. I would also be willing to consider seizing the assets of any federal agent who seizes the assets of any person not formally charged with a crime. The latter assets could then be sold at public auction. This would strongly discourage any federal agents from being too zealous to seize anyone’s assets without just cause.

Notes:

{1} Yes, most of the candidates who ran were clowns!

{2} Cf. Declaration of Independence.

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One thought on “A Solution For Dealing With Civil Asset Forfeiture Abuse

  1. Pingback: An Attempted Dialogue With Those Who Blindly Defend Officer Jeronimo Yanez… | Musings From Exile

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