- Associated Press - Monday, March 30, 2015

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Questions are being raised about some purchases by Iowa law enforcement agencies using money seized under state and federal civil forfeiture laws passed to help fight the scourge of illicit drugs.

The Des Moines Register reports (https://dmreg.co/1G8mrbE ) that the money is supposed to be spent on enhancing law enforcement and crime fighting capabilities, not on items that normally would be covered by departmental budgets.

Among the purchases reported by the Register: scented candles, mulch and tropical fish; sewer and water bills; a $27,000 sport utility vehicle for a county prosecutor; respirators for firefighters.

Former Cass County Attorney Daniel Feistner says his office used forfeiture money to buy the scented candles in 2013. He says the candles helped mask unpleasant body odors from some people visiting the office.

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Information from: The Des Moines Register, https://www.desmoinesregister.com

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