and murdered, and they can't keep crooks from getting guns, but they can do this:
Draconian police powers designed to deprive crime barons of luxury lifestyles are being extended to councils, quangos and agencies to use against the public, The Times has learnt.
The right to search homes, seize cash, freeze bank accounts and confiscate property will be given to town hall officials and civilian investigators employed by organisations as diverse as Royal Mail, the Rural Payments Agency and Transport for London.
I would note that this isn't a 'right'; it's a power, and we know what politicians do with that.
The measure, being pushed through by Alan Johnson, the Home Secretary, comes into force next week and will deploy some of the most powerful tools available to detectives against fare dodgers, families in arrears with council tax and other minor offenders.
Can you freakin' believe this?
The radical extension of the Proceeds of Crime Act, through a Statutory Instrument which is not debated by parliament, has been condemned by the chairman of the Police Federation. Paul McKeever said that he was shocked to learn that the decision to hand over “intrusive powers” to people who were not police was made without consultation or debate.
Why debate? They're your progressive masters, and they know best. And if debate were allowed, you might say things they don't want to hear.
And, just like the 'incentives' that have caused property forfeiture to become such a bullshit moneymaking scheme here,
An “explanatory memorandum” says that a swath of financial investigators attached to the newly empowered bodies will be accredited, trained and monitored by another quango, the National Policing Improvement Agency. The memo adds that asset seizure will result in financial rewards: “Investigation bodies will receive a share of money recovered as additional funding to incentivise further work in recovering the proceeds of crime.”
“Having these Al Capone powers in the back pocket is very valuable for a senior prosecutor but in the hands of someone less experienced and less skilled, particularly when combined with the incentive of their department collecting a share of the confiscated money, there is the potential for charges to be brought which are intended to maximise confiscation recovery rather than reflect the level of criminality concerned.”
Well, damn, you think maybe?!?
“Far worse is the encouragement being given to non-police bodies to search for what they think are proceeds of crime but may not be and subject the victim to the draconian and manifestly unjust processes of the Proceeds of Crime Act. Does anyone in Government understand that if you give prosecutors, who are supposed to be unbiased ministers of justice, the bribe of a proportion of the money they can find, you are actually poisoning the roots of justice in our society?”
That's a very critical question, which brings up another: what if they WANT to poison the roots?
The defense for this crap?
A Home Office spokesman defended the extension of the powers. “Seizing ill-gotten gains is a key part of the fight against criminals — whether it is from small-time offences or organised crime,” he said.
Methinks the Home Office needs to be dealt with using the same kind of compassion and concern they show for the peasants.