Friday June 19, 2015
It isn’t often that honest people receive detailed intelligence about a planned gathering of violent men who steal for a living and kill with impunity. An event of that kind will occur from August 10-12th here in Idaho. In fact, I can provide the specific address of the armed robbers’ summit — 700 South Stratford Drive in Meridian. The location is conspicuously marked and easy to find: It is the Idaho Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) Academy, which will host a two-day session of Desert Snow’s “Phase 2015” asset forfeiture workshop.
“Civil asset forfeiture,” for the mercifully uninitiated, is a procedure in which police officers and the agencies that employ them steal money and property from people who have never been convicted of a crime, and quite often never face criminal charges. The agency designates the desired property as “proceeds” of illicit activity and then files an “in rem” civil lawsuit against it – not the owner of the property, but the property itself. In this process, the burden of proof is placed on the victim, rather than the perpetrator.
Fighting an act of state-licensed larceny of this kind is prohibitively expensive and frequently futile, which means that the privileged plunderers generally make out like the bandits they unfailingly prove themselves to be.