U.S. Attorney Trent Shores announced last Thursday that 17 law enforcement agencies will receive a total of $2 million in seized funds from the drug operation Killa Gorilla. Shores also highlighted the essential work performed by the men and women of law enforcement and thanked them for their service to the people of Oklahoma. The announcement came at a press conference held on Law Enforcement Appreciation Day.
“It is a privilege for me and my team to work daily with these agents and officers. Law enforcement is an honorable profession. These brave men and women embody a dogged, unrelenting spirit. They face obstacles and impending danger, providing for the safety of our communities. They have my gratitude and respect,” Shores said. “Operation Killa Gorilla is just one example of the essential collaborative work officers and agents are performing to disrupt the sale of illegal drugs in the Northern District of Oklahoma. Criminals do not get to keep their ill-gotten gains. It is only appropriate that the forfeited funds go back to the departments to supplement needed training, equipment and other public safety initiatives.”
Eight law enforcement agencies from Oklahoma will each receive a portion of the seized money. The $2 million was seized from profits made by the defendants from the illegal sale of synthetic cannabinoids, also known as K2 or Spice. The IRS, Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Postal Inspection Service and five Texas law enforcement agencies will also receive a portion of the funds for their work in the operation.
The Department of Justice and Department of the Treasury Asset Forfeiture Programs remove the tools of crime from the criminal organizations, deprive wrongdoers of the proceeds for their crimes, recover property that may be used to compensate victims, and deter crime. An ancillary benefit of asset forfeiture is the potential to share federal forfeiture proceeds with cooperating local law enforcement agencies through equitable sharing.
These monies supplement and enhance, not supplant, appropriated agency resources. Oklahoma law enforcement agencies receiving seized funds are:
Broken Arrow Police Department- $255,716
Cherokee Nation Marshal Service- $85,000
Claremore Police Department- $85,000
Owasso Police Department- $85,000
Rogers County Sheriff’s Office- $225,716
Sapulpa Police Department- $262, 716
Tulsa Police Department- $262, 716
Army National Guard- $19,893