Judge Overturns Los Angeles Policy On Seizing And Impounding Cars Driven By Illegal Aliens

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A Los Angeles judge has ruled that the city’s policy on seizing and impounding vehicles violates California State law, and is too permissive and open to aggrandizement.

Superior Court Judge Terry Green ruled that the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) had essentially invented a method for confiscating cars that was inconsistent with both the spirit and the letter of State law, finding that the department’s policy on seizing vehicles driven by illegal aliens wasn’t reasonable in cases when a legal resident and licensed driver was also present.

From the car-centric policy journal TheNewspaper:

At issue is what to do when police pull over an illegal alien, someone who is by definition an unlicensed driver in the state. Judicial Watch, a conservative group, filed suit to force cops to seize and keep cars belonging to illegals for thirty days.

Los Angeles did a brisk business in car impounding until a 2005 decision of the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals changed the legal landscape. The court found that just because a statute allows a car seizure, it does not automatically make confiscation reasonable for the purposes of the Fourth Amendment. The Ninth Circuit held that there was no reason for police to seize a legally parked car from an unlicensed driver when another licensed driver was present.

The department’s rule advised officers to confiscate vehicles that impede traffic flow, present a safety hazard, are located in vandalism-prone areas or “if there is nobody available to lawfully move it out of the way.”

Conservative groups have argued that the LAPD’s confiscation policy represents an “end-run around a law clearly ordering thirty-day impoundment of vehicles from drivers with expired or non-existent licenses.”

Setting aside the immigration politics, the city had a nice little racket going with the impoundments. Retrieving a confiscated vehicle in L.A. can cost more than $1,000 per incident, according to TheNewspaper. Multiply that by the “hundreds of thousands” of cars impounded annually, and the take gets into seven-digit territory.

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • pt

    A lot of that money goes to the impound yard and who is going to pay $1000 to get a car that is worth $1000.

    • Chester

      Oftentimes they get more than the actual retail value when they sell those cars for salvage, which is one way they are allowed to dispose of them without having to have a sheriff’s auction, then give the sheriff more than half of what they sell the car for.

  • colonel marstellar

    No lets just take Amrican citizens cars and let the illegal aliens go?? Does this make sense??

    • Barakolips

      This is happening all over California to American citizens already,who gives a crap what happens to the illegals,stop taking personal property from Americans a clear violation of the fourth amendment!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/gilligannumone Michael Snyder

    not just l.a. should outlaw all cops taking personal vehicles any where in united states. not just illegals, all of us.

  • Vis Fac

    Yet the PRC willingly issues drivers licenses to illegals ignoring US law regarding immigration. This is typical of liberal actions. They will enact infective legislature to appear that they care then turn a blind eye to those breaking the law. Hypocrisy at it best!!

    The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

    A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people
    and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated
    president…

    Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone thinking we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

    …A democracy can best be described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch with a well armed sheep contesting the vote! This too shall be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

    Libertas inaestimabilis res est

    Semper-Fi

  • gypsy

    If they want to be in this country, let them have the same rights as us! NONE

    • IsThisAmerica

      lol. But your right. We have none and they have all.

  • Phillip Maine

    How many times do I have to say we are part of the NAFTA and have not been an independent nation sense our traitors in congress passed the treaty.

  • Somewhere in USA

    Who cares about the cars??? Why are the illegals not being arrested and deported???

  • Richard

    Just a result of a lawless president and a lawless justice department, illegals have more rights than tax paying citizens that pay their bills.

    .

    As the Good Book says about abominations and liars from Proverbs
    Chapter 6 , 11,12,26 and Revelation 21. Old and New Testaments
    judgments…

    Proverbs 6:
    The Wicked Man
    12 A worthless person, a wicked man,
    Walks with a perverse mouth;
    13 He winks with his eyes,
    He shuffles his feet,
    He points with his fingers;
    14 Perversity is in his heart,
    He devises evil continually,
    He sows discord.
    15 Therefore his calamity shall come suddenly;
    Suddenly he shall be broken without remedy.

    16 These six things the Lord hates,
    Yes, seven are an abomination to Him:
    17 A proud look,
    A lying tongue,
    Hands that shed innocent blood,
    18 A heart that devises wicked plans,
    Feet that are swift in running to evil,
    19 A false witness who speaks lies,
    And one who sows discord among brethren.

    Proverbs 11:1
    Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord, But a just weight is His delight.

    Proverbs 12:22
    Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, But those who deal truthfully are His delight.

    Proverbs
    26:25
    When he speaks kindly, do not believe him, For there are seven abominations in his heart;

    Revelation 21:
    8 But the cowardly, unbelieving,
    abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all
    liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and
    brimstone, which is the second death.”
    27
    But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes
    an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s
    Book of Life.Jesus said to “send forth His Gospel (His word, the Bible)to the uttermost parts of the world” Pass this on…

  • Richard

    What is going on now? History repeating itself the works of the antichrist in full power from Daniel chapter 8:

    23 “And in the latter time of their kingdom,
    When the transgressors have reached their fullness,
    A king shall arise,
    Having fierce features,
    Who understands sinister schemes.
    24 His power shall be mighty, but not by his own power;
    He shall destroy fearfully,
    And shall prosper and thrive;
    He shall destroy the mighty, and also the holy people.

    25 “Through his cunning
    He shall cause deceit to prosper under his rule;
    And he shall exalt himself in his heart.
    He shall destroy many in their prosperity.
    He shall even rise against the Prince of princes;
    But he shall be broken without human means.

    Meaning God will take him out, not by human means, maybe Airforce 1 will go down due to overuse of spreading lies all over the world…

  • gypsy

    Welcome to California, Northern Mexico.

    I just wonder which cartel drug lord will be voted in as governor?
    The state and local officials are serving it up to them.

  • Alan

    Double standards at work again. What’s the difference between illegal aliens breaking the law and actual citizens breaking the law? They confiscate the cars of those citizens caught buying drugs for instance, whether or not they have a licensed driver with them, don’t they? So why not extend the same courtesy to the drug addicted citizens as they do illegal aliens? Seems only fair to me.

  • Libertarian Soldier

    If there is a licensed driver in a vehicle, being operated by an unlicensed, illegal driver, that licensed driver is aiding, abetting and conspiring the willful commission of an illegal act and should be cited, as well. If the licensed non-driver wishes to further assist in the commission of this illegal act, that person should be cited, as well and be given the choice, whether to further assume the responsibility for that vehicle and the illegal act of its unlawful driver.