Spain's Guardia Civil police have detained a senior Catalan official and raided regional government ministries involved in organising a banned independence vote. Tensions were already high before the arrest of Josep Maria Jové, secretary-general of the Catalan vice presidency. Catalan leaders are defying a court order to halt the vote, condemned by the Madrid government as illegal. One official called for peaceful resistance to protect the buildings. "The time has come - let's resist peacefully; let's come out and defend our institutions," the president of the Catalan National Assembly, Jordi Sánchez, tweeted.
The program is a type of asset forfeiture that allows police to skirt often more restrictive state laws to seize property using federal law. They then share up to 80 percent of the proceeds with federal counterparts. For some police departments, the money can be an important funding source. More than $6 billion in forfeited funds has been shared with state and local law enforcement since fiscal year 2000, according to the Justice Department's inspector general.