Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 13-06-2018, 22:23   #1
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: The boat: Cowes (Winter), Above 60N (Summer); me: somewhere in the air!
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 21,547
Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

We recently had a good discussion about the risks to cruisers from the practice of civil asset forfeiture -- the practice of customs or law enforcement officers seizing cash, boats, or other assets based on a "suspicion" -- not rising to the level of probable cause -- that the asset was involved with or was the fruit of some kind of crime, and without any filing of any criminal charges or even any intention to file any criminal charges. It is a topic of great and direct interest to many of us who cross borders many times a year, or get boarded and inspected by different kinds of law enforcement officers.

The case which started the discussion -- involving one Albanian immigrant by the name of Kazazi -- has some news, here:

https://www.cleveland.com/metro/inde...t_publish.html

As we might have expected, CBP, having never charged the guy whose life savings they seized a year ago for no reason at all other than it seemed like a lot of cash to them, having never even started any kind of investigation, and having not even filed the one-page document necessary to start the legal process to keep the cash, have finally agreed to give it back, after having kept it for nearly a year.

At least, most of it. $770 disappeared somewhere in the process.
__________________

__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-ętre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 13-06-2018, 22:59   #2
Certifiable Refitter/Senior Wannbe
 
Wotname's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South of 43 S, Australia
Boat: Van DeStat Super Dogger 31'
Posts: 7,945
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Thanks for the update!
__________________

__________________
All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangereous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. T.E. Lawrence
Wotname is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 13-06-2018, 23:28   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2018
Boat: Columbia 29 MK1 Hull #28
Posts: 366
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

So not only did they keep this poor guys life savings for a year, depriving him of both opportunity to use it (opportunity cost) and interest (modest as national rates are). They also relieved him of about $700.00, I wonder if there is a precedent for suing CBP in a case like this for some sort of damages?

I haven't been more upset by much in our "justice system" more than CAF in a very long time. As an aspiring cruiser who plans to head either down the west coast of the US or perhaps launch from Florida I have to say I am keenly watching these stories since I plan to cross international borders and thus deal directly with various border agencies or authorities.

Thanks for the update DockHead, much appreciated.
406Columbia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 10:50   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Alaska/Portugal
Boat: Custom 55
Posts: 835
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

I recall a number of folks on that thread who seemed to be quite convinced that the guy was obviously up to no good, and probably deserved to have his money taken from him.



What say you now? You know who you are.


Here's hoping that this shameful story goes at least some way toward changing your thinking on this matter.



There are many, many others who find themselves in a similar situation to this guy, whose stories haven't had the good fortune to get national coverage.
__________________
TJ, Jenny, and Baxter
svrocketscience.com
TJ D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 11:31   #5
Registered User
 
Nicholson58's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Live aboard
Boat: Camper & Nicholson58 Ketch - ROXY Traverse City, Michigan No.668283
Posts: 3,478
Images: 83
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

We have cruised Canada and the US on the Great Lakes and now are full time cruisers in the Caribbean for two years. We have never been detained or boarded. I don't know what it takes to raise suspicion. Mostly the authorities want money through customs and immigration. We seldom see any sign of police, CG, etc. Most officials look the other way if you forgot your zarpa. I have not done the following but know of cruisers who have. If you really screw up and forgot to exit a country you need only go to a French island where check in is at a computer kiosk in a chandlery or souvenir shop to reset your papers. (Zero to five Euros; welcome to France, stay as long as you wish, have a good time) The most difficult agents and check in/out is in former English colonies where an infinite pile of paper and fees may await. In the BVI, there is no expectation that fees will be the same next time and an agent may refuse entry and give you scant hours to be out of the country for asking to see the fee schedule. We love Trinidad but their boarder control is rediculous with multiple forms in triplicate using carbon paper and agents behind glass and steel bars like a Detroit liquor store. Note you must wear closed shoes, pants and collared shirt, no hat.
Nicholson58 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 14:25   #6
Moderator
 
JPA Cate's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: aboard, cruising in Australia
Boat: Sayer 46' Solent rig sloop
Posts: 12,572
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Well, wouldn't Customs then be liable for the $777?

I can understand the Kazanis feeling "disillusioned". I think that is an extremely tactful way of stating how they feel!

They were fortunate to have found a lawyer who would take the case "pro bono", for them.

I wouldn't have a clue how to find one, especially in a country not my own, and in a second language! [They did well, it was a pretty helpless position to be in, and somehow, they found effective help.]

Ann
__________________
Who scorns the calm has forgotten the storm.
JPA Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 15:23   #7
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 399
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
$770 disappeared somewhere in the process.
To properly swipe a few Benjamins from such stacks, you need to do it AFTER customs quickly weighs the stacks for the impound receipt, but BEFORE the lengthy process of properly counting all 580 bills. Could happen days later.

You grab all the cash in your wallet, and in this case it happened to be 8 bills: 2 tens, 1 five, 5 ones. You can pocket only 8 of the hundred dollar bills, replacing them with your 8 smaller bills, which happened to total $30.

Swiped $800, gave back $30, for a profit of $770.

Saw it in Miami Vice.
Pretty sure.
cyan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 16:31   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: WY / Currently in Hayes VA on the Chesapeake
Boat: Ocean Alexander, Ocean 44
Posts: 965
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

All US citizens need to contact their Senators and Congressmen about this.
darylat8750 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 16:35   #9
Moderator
 
a64pilot's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Albany Ga.
Boat: Island Packet 38
Posts: 19,237
Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by JPA Cate View Post
Well, wouldn't Customs then be liable for the $777?

Nope, cause they say it didn’t exist, and I feel pretty sure he signed a receipt for them taking the money, and I’d assume the receipt has the amount on it that they gave back.
Of course most people would be in shock and willing to sign anything, cause I guarantee they were threatening the man with prison.

I’m not so sure you can weigh dozens of bills and come up with a weight that can tell you the number of bills, due to wear and dirt, I’d assume more variance that that?
a64pilot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-06-2018, 17:34   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 399
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by 406Columbia View Post
I haven't been more upset by much in our "justice system" more than CAF in a very long time.
Count me in that category too. For some reason this particular form of evil government behavior strikes a chord with me. A real dissonant chord. I suppose it is a blend of a strong sense of fair play and the (erroneous) belief that the US government TRIES to get it right, but clumsily fails sometimes. This is not that. This is a horrible strong-arm practice that harms innocent hard-working people, which is endorsed by the current US Attorney General. This is simply theft- it's only about taking in money, not so much about getting bad guys. The Dude does not abide.

How do we know it's only about the money? Well, there is the standard "fee" that gets kept even after the government is forced to return the money to innocent people. There is a law firm that lists 90% recovery as a "success", yet I don't see a tally of THEIR additional fees anywhere...

$54,000 Seized by CBP – $49,000 Returned to our client
$50,800 Seized by CBP – $45,800 Returned to our client
$39,000 Seized by CBP – $36,500 Returned to our client
$37,360 Seized by CBP – $33,500 Returned to our client
$31,062 Seized by CBP – $28,562 Returned to our client
$16,334 Seized by CBP – $15,334 Returned to our client
cyan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19-06-2018, 15:49   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 13
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

People need to realize that this can happen anywhere in the USA and I had it happen to me personally. They dont care if you have a receipt from a bank teller showing you just took your money from the bank either and it is up to you to pay for a attorney to help you retrieve your hard earned money.


Worst of all is the police that seize it get to keep most of it for their department use on whatever they see fit.


I was going to buy a plane that was a distress sale and thought nothing of having $38k in cash $18K of it was my savings and $20K was borrowed from my Dad. But we knew the seller and everything was in order. The plan was for me to drive his car (Mercedes S600) to my dads marina in NC,leave the car there for when he took his boat down and the seller was going to fly and pick me up from Charleston SC. I then planned to fly the plane back to NJ. Well everything was fine until I got pulled over in Virginia,being slightly naive at the time I told the officer about the cash in the trunk and that was when all hell broke loose. It's a long story but they brought a K-9 who quickly indicated on the trunk and it went downhill from there. It didnt matter that I had the teller receipts,copies of both our pilots licenses,a title search on the airplane and so on.I even had the name of the guy at the bank who i was meeting to pay off the lien and NONE of it mattered....... All that mattered was they could make a case for reasonable suspicion and just having cash is enough for that.


It took us almost 3 years to get that money back and I think even the judge was in on it. He kept hanging up on the fact that a young guy was driving a car that cost over 100k new. He thought it was registered to me because we shared the same name except for our middle names that differed slightly. When it was all said and done we lost about $7K between what disappeared and attorney fees.


So to all of those folks thinking you have to be doing something wrong for this to happen.I say go get pulled over with a large sum of cash and see. But dont say I didnt warn you ;-)


I HIGHLY suggest anyone reading this thread to watch this video from a respected attorney
Almost-There is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19-06-2018, 16:25   #12
Certifiable Refitter/Senior Wannbe
 
Wotname's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South of 43 S, Australia
Boat: Van DeStat Super Dogger 31'
Posts: 7,945
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
Nope, cause they say it didn’t exist, and I feel pretty sure he signed a receipt for them taking the money, and I’d assume the receipt has the amount on it that they gave back.
Of course most people would be in shock and willing to sign anything, cause I guarantee they were threatening the man with prison.

.................
According to the this report, the receipt did not have a dollar value. They show a copy of the alleged receipt.
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world...9Ug&ocid=wispr
__________________
All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangereous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. T.E. Lawrence
Wotname is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 19-06-2018, 18:09   #13
Moderator
 
a64pilot's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Albany Ga.
Boat: Island Packet 38
Posts: 19,237
Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Surely there has to be part of the receipt that indicates how much?
Who gives a receipt that says “some”?
a64pilot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19-06-2018, 18:57   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: WY / Currently in Hayes VA on the Chesapeake
Boat: Ocean Alexander, Ocean 44
Posts: 965
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
Surely there has to be part of the receipt that indicates how much?
Who gives a receipt that says “some”?
An out of control government bureaucracy.
darylat8750 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19-06-2018, 19:01   #15
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: St Augustine, FL
Boat: Woods Vardo 34 Cat
Posts: 3,025
Re: Civil Asset Forfeiture -- Kazazi Case Update

He most certainly never declared any of that as income in the US so $770 is pretty low even for flat tax advocates.

And it is $10,000 max at borders. Occasionally have customers run into problems with this. Balance is easily sent thru Western Union
__________________

__________________
@mojomarine1
Boatguy30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Civil Asset Forfeiture ... A Civil Discussion .... SURV69 Our Community 13 15-12-2017 13:12
For Sale: Dry Case Waterproof Phone, Camera & MP3 Case - NEW off-the-grid Classifieds Archive 2 11-07-2012 14:58



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 16:11.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.