The Drug War Corrupts

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

Looks like a Muncie, Indiana prosecutor had a pretty sweet side arrangement going with the local multi-jurisdictional drug task force:

McKinney and the drug task force used confidential settlement agreements, without court orders, to disperse hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and property for the task force’s use.


In one case in which more than $50,000 was seized, records show that McKinney received $4,193 in attorney fees as well as 25 percent of vehicles and other personal property that was auctioned.

The money is supposed to go to a state general fund, where it’s then redistributed–a system that at least diminishes the perverse incentives in jurisdictions where the police department that makes the bust gets to keep all or a percentage of the forfeiture. McKinney and the task force tried to fashion a work-around that law–one that enabled both parties to get paid.

A judge has ordered McKinney to give back the $18,000+ he’s made thus far under the arrangement. He may also face criminal charges.

Thanks to my dad for sending the link.

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