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Drug Courier Profiling Searches

1. Discuss the controversial issues related to law enforcement profiling. Be sure to include the "drug courier profile", U.S. Supreme Court rulings, and the most significant criticism of drug-courier profiling methods. Respond in no less than 300 words.
2. Give an overview of the two types of forfeitures: criminal forfeitures and civil forfeitures. Discuss similarities and differences, how and when used, and any safeguards or precautions used in each. Respond in no less than 300 words.

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1. Discuss the controversial issues related to law enforcement profiling. Be sure to include the "drug courier profile", U.S. Supreme Court rulings, and the most significant criticism of drug-courier profiling methods.

The "drug courier profile" has been defined as an investigative tool used by Drug Enforcement Agency ("DEA") used by agents to identify and to apprehend drug couriers. The concept was created by a DEA agent, who had been assigned to a drug interception at a Detroit airport. After the 1980 initiation of the "War on Drugs" penalties were increased for the violation of drug trafficking laws. Believing that drug couriers transported a large volume of drugs, profiling was instituted by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to curtail the smuggling of drugs (Kadish, 1997). However, a criticism of couriers profiling is that the practice has become synonymous with racial profiling (Lopez, 2014). As he points out, although intended to identify those most likely to commit drug trafficking offenses, the use of drug courier profiles have allowed officers to use a great deal of discretion when matching specific groups to the profile.

For instance, in one court Case, "United States v. Van Lewis", one of the first case to discuss the drug courier profiles, the potential profiler was characterized by: "(1) using small denomination currency for ticket purchases; and (2) traveling to and from major drug import areas, especially for short periods of time; and (3) using extra luggage with no clothing, Subsequently, the DEA used law enforcement profiling techniques to "bring the war on drugs to the streets, individual motorists and communities. From this perspective, critics argued that courier profiling was synonymous with racial profiling that "crossed the lines" as minority suspects were subjected to undue harassment and unreasonable searches and seizures at the discretion of police officers. For example, profiles used to identify potential drug couriers included specific racial categories included African-American males, twenty to fifty years old; and Colombian males wearing ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses drug profiling in the context of search and seizure in 1277 words.

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