ProPublica and WBUR investigated the Civil Asset Forfeiture practices of Worcester County DA Joseph D. Early Jr.
Massachusetts is an outlier among states when it comes to civil forfeiture laws. Prosecutors in the commonwealth are able to keep seized assets using a lower legal bar than in any other state.
WBUR took an in-depth look at Worcester County, which ranks among the top counties for forfeitures in the state. An examination of all forfeitures filed there in 2018 found that of the hundreds of incidents, nearly 1 in 4 — or 24% — had no accompanying drug conviction or criminal drug case filing.
So, people not charged with crimes are having their money and property confiscated.
In more than 500 instances between 2016 and 2019, WBUR found that funds had been in the custody of the [Worcester County] DA’s office for a decade or more before officials had attempted to notify people and give them a chance to get their money back. One case dated back to 1990.
There's a lot more meat to the article. It's worth reading.