The researcher of this essay aims to pay special attention to asset forfeiture as a tool in combating terrorist financing. Asset forfeiture is also categorized by some critics as an effort to rob people of their rights under jurisdiction…
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This research will begin with the statement that asset forfeiture can be employed as a tool against terrorist financing to control this crime. “Asset forfeiture laws allow for the seizure (and eventual forfeiture) of property connected with criminal activity”. In addition, Worrall informs, “forfeiture extends beyond criminal proceeds to include property that is used to facilitate or carry out criminal activity. Such forfeitures can include property that “is used or intended to be used in any manner or part to commit or facilitate the commission of a violation…” Therefore, asset forfeiture is a confiscation of the assets that are part of a criminal activity and among such criminal activities, terrorism is of superior quality as it affects a wide number of people nationally as well as internationally. The law enforcement agencies working in the USA are of the opinion that asset forfeiture is a fruitful way to combat against terrorist financing. Eric Green informs that money laundering and terrorist financing are such criminal activities that can be controlled by means of asset forfeiture, as “the criminal proceeds” will be taken away from “the criminals”. The illegal forces are somewhat dejected to stop their unlawful activities and the proceeds can be utilized for building purposes. According to Green, “Asset sharing enhances international forfeiture cooperation by creating an incentive for countries to work together, regardless of where the assets are located or which jurisdiction will ultimately enforce the forfeiture order.”” Therefore, asset forfeiture to control terrorist financing can be used for increasing cooperation between countries and this cooperation is also for combating against terrorism financing internationally.
Asset forfeiture is also categorized by some critics as an effort to rob people of their rights under jurisdiction. They claim that government tries to snatch away people’s property making them liable for any criminal activity whether they are indulged in it or not (Levy, 1996). There should be proper lawful activity and the accuser should be facilitated with a right to fight for his right. Otherwise, law enforcement officials consider it their right to confiscate any one from his assets accusing him of involving in any kind of crime (Levy, 1996).
To combat terrorist financing, the government of USA has taken enough measures out of which, categorization of suspicious activities is one. Incoherent account transactions, high amount of inward bound and outward account transactions without any specified purpose or reason, transference of large amounts of money from one bank account to another on the name of charities with no particular need and so on. All the mentioned activities point towards suspicious activities and come under suspicion in terms of terrorist financing and require a check from law enforcement agencies. If the people using account for any suspicious activity are caught and there are proofs for terrorist financing, then asset forfeiture or confiscation is taken as a crucial step by law enforcement authorities with prior permission from government bodies (Rush & Hackett, 2004).
Credit card fraud, smuggling, welfare fraud, trading, money laundering methods for funds transfers and much more are employed by terrorists on international basis for transferring and using money for terrorist activities (Levy, 1996). According to The Economist (2005), “Many experts, both in government and the private sector, admit that the chances of detecting terrorists' funds in a bank sufficiently far in advance of a planned attack that it can be prevented are incredibly small.” Because of minimized chances to stop such activities and financial transactions, the government and law enforcement agencies carry a higher responsibility to find solutions to handle international
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