Guy has his truck seized for TWO YEARS over “munitions of war.”
Those 5 bullets are ARMS, America, and “the right of the people to keep (own/possess) and bear (carry) arms SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.”
Seizing a human being’s vehicle, his or her primary means of transportation, is SO VERY WRONG.
Then again, according to the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution for the United States of America, seizing ANYTHING without a proper, court-issued warrant based precisely upon the sworn description of both the place to be searched AND the persons or things to be seized is Constitutionally UNLAWFUL.
Why? Because the people have a Constitutional RIGHT to be SECURE in their persons, houses, papers and EFFECTS, which is a catch-all term including everything else they may own, including any and all means of transportation, firearms and ammunition.
Yes, that includes trucks.
“It’s a corner of the larger forfeiture issue, when federal, state or local officials take someone’s property, without ever having to prove that it has been used for illicit purposes.”
So? Some Air B&B tenant smoke pot in a mountain chatteau and now the owner loses it, completely, without ANY financial compensation, while the organization seizing it sells it and pockets all proceeds?
Tell you what: HELL NO.
I am completely and utterly opposed to any and ALL civil asset forfeiture, even in the case where it’s evidence in a crime. Document the heck out of it with photos, videos, forensic analysis including mass, composition, chemical and biological, mass spectrometer…
Then RETURN IT, as in, like, 30 days. If the lab is backed up, OH WELL – that’s the government’s fault, not the owners, so RETURN IT.
Same goes for homes.
“But it was used in a drug crime…” SO WHAT? WHO CARES! The spouse and kids probably live there, too.
“But the speedboat was used to illegal import drugs…”
Doesn’t matter. It’s still NOT the government’s property.
LISTEN UP: IF, after a complete and proper trial, a JUDGE and JURY finds the defendant guilty, AND it’s determined that fines and/or restitution is due, then and ONLY then should assets be liquidated for that purpose, beginning with NET cash (leave enough to pay all legal debts), and the selling of personal and real property at fair market value, beginning with the SMALLEST items, first.
There should, absolutely, be laws on the books supporting our Fourth Amendment by absolutely forbidding the heinous abuses of power constituted by civil asset forfeiture.
We the People MUST BE SAFE AND SECURE, even from our own government, and REGARDLESS of criminal activity no matter how minor or severe, and that goes double for “right of eminent domain.”
This is OUR country, dammit! WE THE PEOPLE possess the right of eminent domain over our OWN lands!
Anything less is far too great a temptation for lawless i.e. corrupt government officials at all levels.
While we’re at it, both State and Federal governments MUST release all land back to the PEOPLE that exceeds “forts, ports and ten miles square.”
Yes, we do need a few bombing ranges for military practice.
NO, we do NOT need 86% of the land west of and including the Rockies to be “owned” by the Federal Government.
RELEASE OUR LANDS.
People, we have GOT to grow spines and remind ALL governments at ALL levels they work for US, not the other way around.
The very idea of “civil asset forfeiture” is diametrically OPPOSED to ALL values and tenets of both law and principle conveyed in our Declaration of Independence, our Constitution for the United States of America, our Bill of Rights, and the other 17 Amendments that follow.
THAT shit has GOT to STOP.