By Christopher Ingraham for The Washington Post. America’s law enforcement officers have been seizing a record amount of property from citizens, often without charging them with a crime, under the practice known as civil asset forfeiture. Cops took more stuff from people than burglars did last year, according to FBI data.
But despite calls for reform from lawmakers and advocacy groups, budget numbers recently released by the Office of National Drug Control Policysuggest forfeiture efforts will ramp up next year.
For fiscal year 2016, the Department of Justice has requested $297.2 million in funding to support the asset forfeiture activities of the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces. That’s a $14 million increase over the previous year, and a 164 percent increase in drug-related asset forfeiture spending since 2008.