Police Who Steal From Drug Suspects Are Charged With Theft of "Government" Property

Submitted by smorgan on
The drug war has a rather tragic tendency to turn police into perps. Our ability to run a weekly feature with the latest news on domestic drug war corruption is just one example of the ubiquity with which law-enforcement becomes complicit in the very activity they are responsible for preventing.

Inevitably, when one hears about a police officer being sentenced to jail time, you simply know that their crimes were drug war-related:
On one occasion, prosecutors said Silva acquiesced while Kasperzyk improperly relocated confiscated narcotics during a drug raid to solidify a case against a suspect. Another time, prosecutors said Kasperzyk stole $1,000 confiscated during a drug raid and later gave $500 to Silva. Silva kept the money and did not report the theft, prosecutors said.

Kasperzyk has pleaded guilty to theft of government property and a civil rights conspiracy. He is scheduled to be sentenced in March. [Hartford Courant]
So if police steal during a drug raid, they're charged with robbing the government, not the suspect. It is often literally impossible for a drug suspect to be robbed by police, because their property ceases to belong to them once police start grabbing at it. Whether it ends up in an evidence bag or an officer's pocket, it's all the same to the innocent-until-proven-guilty drug suspect.

Isn't it interesting that the government maintained its ownership of the property here even though the arresting officers turned out to be liars and thieves? Even when police are found guilty of planting and stealing evidence, the government still keeps the fruits of their felonious labor. Anyone presiding over a policy such as this has no business enforcing laws against theft in the first place.

How can government possibly expect moral accountability from agents who are trained to steal on its behalf?

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Source URL: https://stopthedrugwar.org/speakeasy/2008/jan/08/police_who_steal_drug_suspects_a