Let John Oliver And Jeff Goldblum Show You How Police Commit “Legalized Robbery”


In last night’s episode of Last Week Tonight, John Oliver guides us through the uncomfortably murky practice of civil forfeiture — a completely legal procedure that allows police to seize one’s money and property without ever charging said person with any wrongdoing.

Oliver’s segment cites a recent Washington Post investigation into the shady practice, which is used by law enforcement agencies throughout the country and is reportedly on the rise. As Ezekiel Edwards of the Criminal Law Reform Project succinctly labels in Oliver’s segment, yes, civil forfeiture sounds an awful lot like “legalized robbery by law enforcement.”

Pretty disturbing, no? Thankfully, Oliver’s report includes a helpful “Law & Order” parody featuring Jeff Goldblum to walk us through the absurdity that is civil forfeiture.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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