A prosecutor in Lawrence has seized four times the amount of cash as three years ago through drug-related civil forfeitures, which requires alleged criminals to prove the money was not used in illegal activity.
LAWRENCE — A northeast Kansas prosecutor's office has quadrupled the amount of cash seized in forfeiture cases since an attorney was appointed to focus on those cases three years ago.
Last year Douglas County seized more than $263,000 from criminals. That's up from slightly more than $62,000 seized in 2010.
District Attorney Charles Branson told The Lawrence Journal-World it's up to alleged criminals to prove they had a legal right to the seized money.
Branson says his office uses its share of the money to pay for staff training or to provide agencies such as Lawrence Memorial Hospital with equipment like that used to examine sexual assault victims.
Branson says his appointment of a civil appellate attorney has helped process more civil forfeitures since 2011.