Under Illinois law, the state’s attorney may petition on behalf of a local law enforcement agency, for the seizure of an automotive vehicle when it is used in the commission of any serious felony crime. Whether the petition is granted is solely in the judge’s discretion. In addition to drug crimes, cars may be seized for DUI, driving on a revoked license based on DUI, gambling and stalking. Of the 126 vehicles seized by the Naperville Police Department between 2012 and 2015, only 26 were involved in drug crimes.
Seized vehicles are typically sold at auction but may be used in undercover operations or training. Auction proceeds go to the police department responsible for the arrest as well as the municipality or county where the arrest occurred. Naperville made almost $170,000 off of the cars seized between 2012 and 2015, with almost $17,000 going to the police department.
Last year alone, DuPage County seized 405 vehicles. So far this year, DuPage has seized 189 vehicles, according to a spokesman for the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office.
Cars seized in crimes generate lucrative income for police, governments, July 23, 2016, www.chicagotribune.com