Police auctions tend to conjure up images of beat up cars confiscated from drug dealers and mint condition police cruisers that—for one reason or another—never saw service. The reality lies somewhere in the middle, and there are some good deals to be had so long as you're careful, and absolutely sure about what you're doing. Let this list be your insurance.
Treasury Department Auctions: The other agency very active in holding auctions is the Treasury Department, with roughly 300 sales per year. Treasury often offers in-person previews in California, Florida, New Jersey and Texas. Treasury auctions off "property forfeited as a result of violations of federal law enforced by the Department of Treasury or nonpayment of Internal Revenue Service taxes," according to its website. There are many categories of goods, including concrete items like antiques and coins but also less tangible property like stocks and patents.
The method has been the subject of increased controversy during the twenty-first century as house prices sky-rocketed. The rapidly rising housing market saw many homes, especially in Victoria and New South Wales, selling for significantly more than both the vendors' reserve price and the advertised price range. Subsequently, the auction systems' lack of transparency about the value of the property was brought into question, with estate agents and their vendor clients being accused of "under-quoting". Significant attention was given to the matter by the Australian media, with the government in Victoria eventually bowing to pressure and implementing changes to legislation in an effort to increase transparency.
From our early days as an online police auction site, there was one piece of property & evidence that we did not touch – firearms. However, recently for many states and jurisdictions it has become a requirement, and even mandated, for law enforcement agencies to auction off their seized, forfeited and unclaimed firearms just as they do with other parts of the property and evidence room.
Police Auction events are handled differently depending on the various police forces. Some authorities commission auctions through various contracted auctioneers. Others hold Online Police Auctions through various websites. The issue is that the police auctioneers who are appointed to sell goods is constantly changing. So to keep up-to-date with upcoming police auctions around the country use the GAUK Auction Search Engine and for those elusive Police Auction lots try Lot Shark alert service.
CWS Asset Management and Sales (CWSAMS) is a nationwide company with expertise in the management, marketing and sales of a wide range of assets, specializing in web-based and live auctions. CWSAMS has provided continuous support to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, its legacy agencies, and other public & private entities for the marketing and sale of real and personal property for the past 26 years. An abbreviated list of clients are:
In early 2015, we made the decision to help our clients auction this piece of property & evidence through innovative solutions that not only fulfills this requirement for many agencies, but also supports public safety as in many jurisdictions the proceeds from these auctions can be used to purchase products like wearable body cameras, tactical gear and more.