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Policing for Profit: The Abuse of Civil Asset Forfeiture (3rd Edition)

Civil forfeiture allows police to seize property on the mere suspicion that it is involved in criminal activity. Prosecutors can then forfeit, or permanently keep, the property without ever charging its owner with a crime. By contrast, criminal forfeiture requires prosecutors to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that an owner is guilty of a crime and then, in the same proceeding, prove the property is connected to the crime. This report demonstrates that local, state and federal agencies use civil forfeiture to collectively forfeit billions of dollars each year.

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