Iredell seizes more than $300,000 cash
During the week of July 19, the narcotics division and the Interstate Criminal Enforcement team of the Iredell Sheriffís Office seized $381,960 in cash following multiple investigations.
According to a press release, the money was seized from people suspected of being involved in drug smuggling and various other crimes. In each of the cases, Homeland Security was contacted and the money has been accepted to be forfeited. Once the process is completed, 80 percent of the proceeds will be returned to the Iredell County Sheriffís Office.
At the discretion of the sheriff and Iredell County, the money may be used for salaries, to buy vehicles, equipment, etc. The asset forfeiture program, the press release says, has been instrumental in funding the Iredell County Sheriffís Office crime lab, saving Iredell County taxpayers thousands of dollars. It has also allowed the office to turn cases and evidence around in a short time, benefitting agencies in and around Iredell County. Many of the Sheriffís Officeís fleet vehicles have been bought with forfeiture money.
With this asset-sharing program, the press release says, Iredell County government has saved jobs and services.
The money seized is only forfeited when probable cause can be established that it is proceeds from drug dealing or other crimes.
All the individuals signed waivers relinquishing their rights to money that was seized the week of July 19. The cases are ongoing and may go into other states and cities.
In addition, $36,000 of this money came from cases originated by Iredell County investigators. The cases were adopted by the federal system and assets were sent back to the Sheriffís Office.
Year-to-date cash seizures between the two divisions (narcotics/ICE Team) have been well over $500,000. This total does not include patrol divisions or the ACE team, which also seizes narcotics and money.