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Use of Equitable Sharing Revenues by the Compton Police Department
Compton, California

Report No. GR-90-03-014
June 2003
Office of the Inspector General

Executive Summary

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of the Inspector General, Audit Division, has completed an audit of the use of DOJ equitable sharing revenues by the Compton Police Department (CPD). Equitable sharing revenues represent a share of the proceeds from the forfeiture of assets seized in the course of certain criminal investigations.1 Our audit covered the period from July 1, 1993, through June 30, 2002, which represented the fiscal years (FY) 1994 through 2002.2 During this period, the CPD reported $2,172,040 in equitable sharing revenues received and interest income earned.

We found that the CPD and the City of Compton were in material noncompliance with DOJ guidelines governing the accountability and use of equitably shared forfeited assets. As a result we question $2,172,040, or all of the equitable sharing revenues received by the CPD from FYs 1994 through 2000, and the interest income earned by those revenues.

The CPD was the local law enforcement agency until it was dissolved in September 2000. From September 17, 2000 to date the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department (LASD) has performed local law enforcement in Compton. The LASD at Compton generally complied with the DOJ guidelines, so we do not question any of the equitable sharing awarded to the LASD.

We reviewed the CPD's compliance with six essential equitable sharing guidelines: local reporting requirements, accounting for equitable sharing receipts, use of equitably shared property, use of equitable sharing funds, interest earned on equitable sharing funds, and supplanting. In each of these areas, we found material weaknesses on the part of the CPD and/or the City of Compton.

The major instances of noncompliance are listed below.

The results of our work are discussed in greater detail in the Findings and Recommendations section of the report. The audit objectives, scope, and methodology appear in Appendix I.


  1. The DOJ asset forfeiture program has three primary goals: (1) to punish and deter criminal activity by depriving criminals of property used or acquired through illegal activities; (2) to enhance cooperation among foreign, federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies through equitable sharing of assets recovered through this program; and, as a by-product, (3) to produce revenues to enhance forfeitures and strengthen law enforcement
  2. The City of Compton's fiscal year is from July 1 through June 30.