February 3, 2017

In an early Christmas present, the federal government dropped its forfeiture case against Charles Clarke, the college student who had his money seized three years ago at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, and gave back his $11,000 plus interest. IJ first represented Charles in 2014 and the case quickly gained national attention.

As the judge in the case noted, Charles consistently maintained that the money was his life savings, the majority of which came from documented educational benefits he received because his mom is a disabled veteran as well as money he earned from working. He normally stored his life savings in his mom’s house, but with his mom’s impending move within Florida, he took the money with him on a two-month trip to Cincinnati to visit friends and relatives.

The settlement was the product of negotiations that began in November 2016. Charles was elated when he received the money in December and relieved that the whole ordeal is now behind him.

Unfortunately, many other Americans are being victimized by forfeiture laws at the state and federal levels. IJ will continue to fight to end this abusive practice.

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