Police budgets utilize suspected illegal activity and the drug trade to pad their budgets. Departments will forego stopping the flow of drugs into the country in order to confiscate the proceeds on their way back. A cocaine bust is great but it just gets destroyed, the millions of dollars seized after a sale can go right into their coffers.
It doesn’t stop there of course, and police can take any property they want with little recourse for those affected. A person doesn’t even have to be charged with a crime to have their property stolen and qualified immunity ensures the police will not be held responsible if you are innocent and try to sue. A study mentioned in a link below states “90% of civil forfeitures do not include criminal charges”.
“Priority is given to generating seizures” instead of protecting and serving, but this has no effect on decreasing taxes or budgets of police departments. In the story linked above the police chief even ended the D.A.R.E program, with some locals crying foul over the motives.
Policing for Profit creates an “addictive appetite” as the money is often used for things a normal budget won’t cover. Departments can get up to 80% of the money from a seizure when made a federal case.
TLDR: Police use shady tactics to pad their budgets, from allowing drug deals to happen so they can seize the money instead of destroy the product, to illegal civil asset forfeiture without any criminal charges. This creates a massive conflict of interest where police departments are rewarded for doing the wrong thing. Letting drugs hit the streets and be sold has added billions of dollars to department budgets as they seize the money after a deal is done, effectively making them drug dealers.
Disclaimer: This is a guest post and it doesn’t necessarily represent the views of IWB.