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US government asset seizures on the rise

August 24, 2011
Zell am See, Austira

The Wall Street Journal published a disturbing article earlier this week entitled “Federal Asset Seizures Rise, Netting Innocent With Guilty.

You can already imagine the crux of the article.

In the United States, there are hundreds of regulations which authorize dozens federal agencies to confiscate private property– homes, cars, bank accounts, gold, company shares, and even personal effects.

Ironically, most Americans still think that they live in a country where you’re innocent until proven guilty. Nothing could be further from the truth, and it’s just another clear example of how the US Constitution has become a worthless piece of toilet paper for the federal government.

The Fifth Amendment states that “No person shall be… deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” Tell that James Lieto, a New York businessman who was relieved of $392,000 when the armored car company used by his check-cashing firm was taken down by the FBI.

Lieto was innocent and not implicated in any wrongdoing, but the FBI took his money regardless as it just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Last October, another businessman named Raul Stio was suspected of wrongdoing by the Treasury Department. The government seized over $150,000 from his account, yet in the 10-months that followed, Stio has still not been charged with a crime.

According to Justice Department statistics, the total value of confiscated property exceeded $2.5 billion in 2010, more than double from five years ago. The average take per case? $166,000… and the vast majority of cases were non-criminal.

It’s truly staggering to think about how much can be taken away from you in the blink of an eye, all without any judicial oversight or right to a hearing.

The reason could be anything. Maybe you violated some arcane, meaningless regulation among the hundreds of thousands of pages of US Code (ignorance of the law is NOT an excuse!). Maybe you were at the wrong place at the wrong time. Or maybe they had no real reason at all other than mere suspicion.

One minute you have money, the next you’re completely locked out of your wealth and livelihood. They force YOU to prove to them that you aren’t guilty, but they take away any means you had to defend yourself.

Look, this is the new reality in America. The entire country has become a nation of criminals– there isn’t a single man, woman, or child alive who is not in violation of some obscure regulation or cannot be ‘suspected’ of wrongdoing.

This is really just a form of cannibalism– a government feeding on its own citizens in order to keep the party going just a little bit longer. They’ll raise taxes, seize assets, take over pension funds, erode freedoms, start wars and send people to die– whatever it takes to maintain the status quo.

I’ve long advocated for an internationalization strategy: diversifying various assets and interests overseas so that no one single government has total control over your livelihood.

Store your gold in Switzerland. Open a bank account in Hong Kong. Register your company in the BVI. Establish a ‘backup’ residency in Chile. Expand your business in Brazil. Get a better job in Singapore. Obtain a second passport in Malta. Open a brokerage account in the Cayman Islands.

This approach is NOT just for the super rich. In fact, I’ve helped all kinds of people to internationalize, young and old, rich and poor.

Taking some simple steps to protect yourself will give you extraordinary peace of mind. You’ll know that, without doubt, you have some savings socked away that NOBODY can touch. You’ll know that you have a solid emergency backup plan. You’ll know that everything you’ve worked for won’t vanish in an instant.

A few months ago we held a comprehensive, hands-on workshop in Panama that was a sort of ‘internationalization crash course.’ It fed years worth of experience and actionable information into a three-day event.

My personal contacts– bankers, residency experts, gold dealers, corporate specialists, trustees, tax attorneys, etc. came from all over the world to teach people how to implement these tactics and maintain full compliance with the law.

Because the event sold out so quickly, we hired the most professional Hollywood film crew we could find to record the event and put together a video series for people who couldn’t attend.

This 12-disc DVD kit contains over 20 hours of footage plus a comprehensive 200+ page workbook with the personal contact information of every single expert who spoke at the workshop. You simply cannot find these solutions or intelligence anywhere else at any price.

The alarm bells are ringing, and only you can choose to listen.  Click here to learn more about our DVD Kit while supplies last.

Our goal is simple: To help you achieve personal liberty and financial prosperity no matter what happens.

If you liked this post, please click the box below. You can watch a compelling video you’ll find very interesting.

Will you be prepared when everything we take for granted changes overnight?

Just think about this for a couple of minutes. What if the U.S. Dollar wasn’t the world’s reserve currency? Ponder that… what if…

Empires Rise, they peak, they decline, they collapse, this is the cycle of history.

This historical pattern has formed and is already underway in many parts of the world, including the United States.

Don’t be one of the millions of people who gets their savings, retirement, and investments wiped out.

Click the button below to watch the video.

About the author: Simon Black is an international investor, entrepreneur, permanent traveler, free man, and founder of Sovereign Man. His free daily e-letter and crash course is about using the experiences from his life and travels to help you achieve more freedom.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Frozeninthenorth

    Although your advise is sound, my guess is that for Americans these options are become more difficult to obtain because of the new extraterritoriality  rules being imposed.  Swiss banks will no longer open bank accounts for Americans (never mind residents), and have largely asked Americans to close their accounts.  This is true elsewhere too, as financial institutions decide that American customers are just too much trouble (IRS, etc). 

    America the police state is just around the corner.  Already you are seeing curfew in Chicago and Philly.  If you are 18 or less no walking in the street after 9PM. 

    • H4890

      Well, so open an account for your company. Often the best way to get around all rules and regulations that politicians force on business, is to open an account _in the name of a company_. That way, no one complains. =)

    • Jimmy

      that’s why you need a second citizenship….even if you don’t plan to leave the US…you can open the account in your status as a resident of another country

      • StuckInUK4Now

        But don’t forget – passports show your place of birth, which stays the same no matter what citizenship you adopt later on in life. Any guesses as to how long it will be before information gets reported back to your birth country, not just your passport country?

        On which topic – are there any countries out there that DON’T include your birthplace in their passports?

      • Guest

        As far as I know Canada used to (and maybe still does) offer the opportunity to not have your birthplace in its PP.  However, those choosing this option had trouble using such a PP to enter/exit other countries.  Again as far as I know Canada was/is extremely rare in doing this, perhaps the only country.

        And to answer the question below banks will want to know who the owner of the company is, using a company name only enhances your privacy a bit ( a cheque might say ABC Co. instead of your name but the bank will know your ID

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000286296130 Trevor Spencer

       There are multiple banks in Switzerland that will open accounts for US citizens. Besides, Switzerland isn’t the only place in the world for banking. There are plenty of other places where they are happy to take the money of Americans.

      • Treeman

        yep, and many of them have no  intent on returning it to  you.

  • Pbdavidson2

    and what will Switzerland’s response be when the U.S. puts pressure on them to relinquish gold ownership/storage information…..they’ve proven they will cave like any other country under U.S. pressure.

    • Fabian

      Exactly and stopped saying that because people started to call me names. 

  • http://www.paintyominis.com theHman

    Unless you can back up your statistics with some reliable sources, I’d say your post is full of it.

  • TheFastestCamper

    Speaking as someone who can directly trace his relatives to the Mayflower, I can respect your post. I appreciate your passion.

    Do not allow your pride to get in the way of rational thinking. The article did not say that you should relinquish your patriotic duties and start pledging allegiance to Chile. He was only saying that you should protect yourself by limiting the opportunities that any single government, or financial institution can find to sieze ALL of your assets and/or limit your ability to obtain them. ie: You may lose the gold you have stored in that Swiss bank, but that’s why you opened the bank account in Hong Kong, and started that business in Brazil. What good are you going to do for your country if your starving and without shelter? Your better off preparing to make it through the initial storm, so that you are able to come back and fight the ‘good fight’ later.

  • http://www.paintyominis.com theHman

    I think you should calm down a bit, take a big step backwards and look around at what is actually going on here. Such blind patriotism is not good for the soul or health. It’s why the US gov’t gets away with everything it does.

    I am curious though, why do you think moving away from a corrupt gov’t and country that has been clearly on the decline for years and not far off from confiscating the wealth and freedoms of its citizens such a bad thing?

    • brearly

      Because if everyone “moved away” every time instead of fighting to correct the issues none of us would ever be free at any time. They tyrants of the world would be left to do whatever they want, whenever they want. It is my duty to fight for what I think is right, not to run and hide. The means at which I fight can and probably will change; currently I am fighting by the “rules”, my adversaries might not be so lucky one day.

  • http://www.paintyominis.com theHman

    I’m sure people said that in Russia just before the Tzarist revolution…

    • Dr. Ectomy

      You’re right! It’s kinda creepy really….

  • Craig

    Sue every bastered and organization involved if it happens to you!

    • Conway193

      You CAN”T sue the bastards – I tried – they told me they would KEEP my money if I didn’t sign a release holding them immune from any legal action on my part.

      American freedom is a GODDAMNED LIE – you have no RIGHTS, and if they want to destroy you, they can, and YOU can do nothing about it.

  • fabian

    Before you fight, you’d better stash your assets somewhere safe and strategically plan for a retreat. 

  • BoomerMary

    What a joke.  Holding a conference on this problem in Panama where they not only can take your money but they can jail you for years and never charge you with a crime.  Wake up!  If you are going to help people at least know the facts 

    • Davesbox1

      im a resident of both panama anbd the united states, their constitution is based on the us constitution and in my 50 years of going back and forth I have never seen anything ike you imply- retiress income is 100% tax free and you dont pay any property taxes for a house under 30k- more than 50,000 americans have retired in panama and the number is climbing dear.

  • Conway193

    If any reader actually thinks they are free and have “inalienable rights”, according to the toilet paper US Constitution, living in this decadent, dying, bankrupt nation, try reading this missive to wake you up from your silly, untenable dream:

    Believe me, I know all about “asset seizures” by the criminal United States government, State governments, and their enforcers, the jackbooted nazi pigs – who view anyone as their enemy. Today’s politicians, the pig’s bosses, are nothing but amoral elected gangsters that make pretenders like Al Capone or Lucky Luciano appear as a saints, out to steal everything they can from anyone they can, even if they have to frame people and render them destitute to do it.

    Crooked politicians do this by employing their dimwitted, thuggish, murderous, arrogant, jackbooted pigs, which have an average IQ of 90. Yes, ninety is the average IQ of Officer Porkman, sworn to “protect and serve”. That may explain why pigs are easily trained to be mindless automatons with no ability to make rational decisions based on perceived input, even killing people in their OWN HOMES, as happened to Jose Guerena of Tucson, Arizona. Jackbooted pigs are supposedly our “servants”, when in reality they are self-convinced little tin gods, out to destroy anyone who crosses their path in any way they can. Decades ago I was pulled over for a bad tag or tail light, I don’t recall which, and a pig asked me for my license and registration. Upon opening my wallet to show ID, the pig saw that I had cash on my person; he took my money, arrested me, and threw me in a cell at the police station, stating that I was a “drug dealer” – HAVING ABSOLUTELY NO PROOF of that charge!

    The pigs kept me in a cell at their pigsty for eighteen hours, without food or water mind you; they searched my vehicle, they found NO drugs – not even one goddamn aspirin – and they STOLE my tools from the trunk of my vehicle. As the had NO EVIDENCE to hold me, they cut me loose on personal recognizance bond, though the pigs did charge me with “Disobeying a lawful order from police officer” – whatever the hell that is.

    That contrived charge was thrown out of court by an angry judge months later; it took perhaps five minutes, with the judge actually have to tell one smart mouthed pig to shut up after he had dismissed the case. It took me well over a year to have my funds returned, with NO APOLOGY from the pigs or the state, and it cost me $1000.00 to hire a smoothtalking shyster to get MY money returned to me.

    Before that occurrence, I was an average, self-employed, loyal American citizen who voted, ran my business, paid my taxes, and so forth. After the debacle of having my money STOLEN by legally sanctioned HIGHWAYMEN, I stopped voting, though I still have to pay capital gains on equity profits every year, and I absolutely refuse to participate in anything having to do with Local, State or Federal government.

    That said, I despise all politicians, to a man, with a white-hot hatred that erupts from the very core of my being. I wish they and their loyal minions every ill will, laughing at their myriad misfortunes when they occur. I laugh loudly whether they have strokes, like the one that killed off that senile old bastard Robert Byrd, crippling heart attacks, vicious cancers like Ted Kennedy’s hilarious glioma that eventually killed his despicable, amoral ass, or silly sexual happenings like occurred with Anthony Weiner, Mark Foley, or Larry Craig.

    Further, I hope I live long enough to see the corrupt, bankrupt United States utterly destroyed, either from within or from without, and every time I hear the news of a pig of whatever stripe getting himself killed, in any situation, I laugh like a goddamned jackal!

    • Frankapostol

      I just finished reading your comments,and I am deeply saddened by your expressed thoughts consequential to the abuse to which you say you have been subjected. 

      The United States is still a great nation; however, it is seriously ill.  What I am saying is:  Dont hate the patient, hate the syndrome.  I say syndrome because it embodies so manny of the manifestations of corruption that our various bodies of government — state legislative bodies, and the congress of the US — have come to represent.  

      Since the majority of both houses of of congress have prostituted the powers of their positions to the amoral executive hierarchy of the corporate world, I often referr to the congress as the largest whore house on the planet.

      Yes our country is severly ill.  But, please, don’t turn your back it.  Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water, so to speak. 

      We can still save our country; we can get it back.  It is just going to take an incredible effort by most of our people, and we can do it if, we just will.

      Frank Apostol




      • Conway193

        This vile sovereign entity, the United States, CANNOT and MUST NOT be saved; it would be better for all mankind if it was ERASED from the earth and the pages of history forever.

        Your remarks, “Frank Apostol” fall on deaf ears. I do not SAY I was subjected to the abuses I received – I am telling you the MOTHERFUCKING TRUTH.


        That said, I turned my back on this benighted dump when they turned their backs on me, using their jackbooted nazi pigs, when they had the unmitigated audacity to STEAL MY LEGALLY EARNED MONEY and call me a fucking drug dealer with absolutely NO PROOF, when I was a loyal, voting citizen with NO CRIMINAL RECORD whatsoever.

        Fuck this place; I have had it with the vicious goddamned LIE that IS the United States, a nation run by elected criminals from top to bottom. I am forever, and always will be, their intransigent enemy, for as long as I live, and I sincerely hope for this bankrupt nation’s total DESTRUCTION at the hands of its myriad enemies, from within and from without.

        I reiterate: I will laugh like a goddamned jackal if I have the good fortune to watch this forsaken place DIE in agony.

  • Conway193

    You actually think you’re free? You think you have rights? WAKE UP and clean out your headgear guy, Santa Claus isn’t real, and neither is Jesus. Quite simply, you are a TAX SLAVE of a vicious, amoral sovereign Federal government, that can murder you on a whim and get away with it – they do every day, just read the news.

    Get this through your head – those rotten, criminal, gangster bastards running the United States can do any goddamn thing they want to you, and you can’t do one fucking thing about it. Try defending your home with a gun – the pigs will mow you down with automatic weapons, and the crooked Commissioner will call it a “good shooting” as you ROT IN A BOX, dead as a stone. If they arrest you without slaughtering you first, all they have to do is claim you’re a “drug dealer”, or a “child molester”, or a “tax evader”, or a “terrorist”. Then they’ll lock you up, fabricate necessary evidence to convict you, and then they’ll send you off to the big house where you can enjoy getting beaten by sadistic guards and getting fucked in the ass by musclebound jailhouse queers.

    How’s that for fucking freedom?

  • Dan

    brearly, without people who moved to another country, or “run and hide” as you call it, the founding fathers wouldn’t even have been born. People from all over the world moved to America, often fleeing their oppressive governments at home, in search for freedom and opportunity. This is no different than people leaving the US today in search of freedom and opportunity, getting away from an oppressive government.

  • Bwaterson

    As far as as suing the bastards there are “sovereign immunity laws” that protect the police, politicians, etc. from law suits.Even if they are guilty. When the american people wake up maybe we can do something about it

  • http://vagabondians.com/ Glenn Dixon

    Here’s yet another example from this week:


    Gibson guitars had legally imported Customs-inspected wood seized in a raid. They also have a lawsuit from two years ago trying to regain a previous confiscation for which no charges have ever been filed.

  • Curtis R. Bell

    It’s the state’s

  • Domlanic

    Americans are among the wealthiest, most educated people on the planet- yet one has to ask “How can this be when masses of them (a) believe in religion and (b) vote for morons like Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachman?” Answers, please….  

    • Cjdahlin

      All but one American

    • introspector7

      For the same reason the morons voted for Obama, Freedom of Choice….and still the same two political parties expelling hot air. Hard to fly like an Eagle from a nest of Fools!

    • mick

      The majority of americans are ignorant and self-centered (the 80/20 rule applies); since a majority vote is all it takes, and votes are bought by candidates/media – it is easy to sway the 80 percent.

  • introspector7

    Why is it that the party that stands on the stage of tolerance always seems to over regulate to the tune of the outcome that is demonstrated in this article? Beware of those that advocate protection of the masses. You will soon find the shackles around your own ankles. Libertas Inaestimabilis Res Est

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