Chuck Grassley
Justice Department policy change targets abuses in police seizures

Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. on Friday issued sweeping revisions to Justice Department regulations governing seizures of cash and other property from people who are not charged with a crime. The new policy will block state and local police departments from using the federal asset forfeiture law in most cases. Some departments have been accused of improperly using the law to raise revenue. David A. Harris, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh, said Holder's action could help stop a long history of abuses by local and state law enforcement agencies. "It was appalling at some levels that police powers were used to seize things and money as a primary purpose, not as a...