Asset Forfeiture

Roadside Cash Seizures Get Louisiana Court Approval

These are tough times and the cops have to make a buck, too

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Drivers in Louisiana unable to document the source of every dollar they carry could find their money seized by police. The state Supreme Court yesterday ruled officers were right to grab $144,320 from motorist Tina Beers because, in the high court's opinion, she was unable to come up with a credible explanation of where the funds came from.

On January 10, 2009, State Trooper Dupuis pulled over Beers' 1995 Plymouth Voyager minivan on Interstate 10 in St. Martin Parish. Beers traveling with her three children aged between two and seven. The court record no longer preserves the cause of the original traffic stop because Dupuis quickly lost interest once he obtained permission to search the vehicle. The trooper found nine bundles of cash in compartment on the minivan floor. Dupuis knew his department might be able to keep the money, so he called in a drug dog to alert on the bundles of cash.