U.S.: ACLU, DPA To Present Capitol Hill Briefing On Federal Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform

ACLU-CivilAssetForfeiture

Speakers Include Civil Rights Leaders, Former Reagan-Era Administrator of Forfeiture Fund, Victim of Recent Drug Enforcement Administration Asset Seizure

Briefing Highlights Need for Federal Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform

A Capitol Hill briefing on federal civil asset forfeiture reform will be presented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), and The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Thursday, June 4, from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m., in Room 188 of the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C.

WHEN: Thursday, June 4, 2015

10:00 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.

Continental Breakfast

WHERE: Russell Senate Office Building

Room 188

Washington, DC 20515

SPEAKERS:

Brad Cates, Director, Department of Justice Asset Forfeiture Office (1985-1989)

Wade Henderson, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Joseph Rivers, Victim of Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Seizure

Hilary Shelton, NAACP

Darpana Sheth, Institute for Justice

Sarah Stillman, The New Yorker

RSVP: rsvpaclu@aclu.org

Under civil asset forfeiture, a property owner does not have to be found guilty of a crime – or even charged with a crime – to lose his cash, car, home or other property. Civil asset forfeiture, unlike criminal asset forfeiture, allows law enforcement agencies to seize and keep property they merely believe is connected to criminal activity.

This questionable practice generates billions of dollars annually for law enforcement at federal, state, and local levels. Last year, the Department of Justice Asset Forfeiture Fund took in over $4 billion in assets. The profit incentives driving civil asset forfeiture have earned it the nickname “policing for profit.”

Bipartisan legislation known as the FAIR Act has been introduced in both houses of Congress that would dramatically reform federal civil asset forfeiture laws, and federal policymakers in both parties are now considering civil asset forfeiture reforms. Panelists will discuss what Congress can do to stop this unjust and unfair practice.

Graphic: Granite Grok