Law Enforcement: DEA Lax on Handling Seized Cash, Audit Finds

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has rules in place to safeguard the hundreds of millions of dollars of cash seized or forfeited from drug suspects each year, but DEA agents largely ignore them, a review by the Justice Department's Office of the Inspector General has found. The lax handling of all that cash is an invitation to theft and corruption, the audit warned.

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/seizedcash.jpg
seized cash
The audit examined thousands of seizures between October 2003 and November 2005. During that period, DEA agents made more than 16,000 seizures totaling nearly $616 million. According to Justice Department Inspector General Glenn Fine, author of the audit, DEA agents frequently failed to count the cash they seized, often didn't provide receipts, rarely bothered to record the seizures in agency ledgers, and frequently failed to have colleagues witness the counting and handling of the money.

"Failure to establish effective controls for safeguarding seized cash can lead to discrepancies, accusations of theft, or misappropriation of seized cash," Fine wrote in a fine display of bureaucratic understatement.

The lax procedures led to at least 12 instances where either the DEA's Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) or the Office of the Inspector General's Investigations Division investigated allegations of missing or stolen cash, Fine noted. "The investigations showed that DEA personnel did not follow established controls for safeguarding the seized cash," he wrote. "Problems identified include agents not counting the seized cash, not providing a DEA-12 receipt to the suspect, and transporting the seized cash without a witness present."

Kind of makes you wonder just how much cash got up and walked away, doesn't it?

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

seams like laws are enforced

seams like laws are enforced to assist advancement of personal gain for the law enforcement agents. I see alot of abuse of power. How do you fight the badge! Everyone is guilty untill you can prove innocence.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <i> <blockquote> <p> <address> <pre> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <br> <b>

More information about formatting options

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, Vaping, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School