There was a breakthrough re: civil asset forfeiture in January: Eric Holder announced that of the Federal Equitable Sharing Program. Local police agencies are no longer allowed to circumvent state restrictions on civil asset forfeiture by procuring nominal federal involvement in their investigations, thereby making those investigations governed by more forfeiture-friendly federal law. Many states have changed or are in the process of changing civil asset forfeiture laws to now require arrests or convictions before assets can be seized, rather than just suspicion. Police were using the Equitable Sharing program, which has a very low bar for seizing asset (the Fed keep 20% and gave the rest back to the police).
Local and state police have abused the Equitable Sharing Program to seize billions in cash from motorists without arresting them or even charging them with a crime. This has been so profitable for the police that an entire industry devoted to training cops on how to maximize their cash seizures from motorists has appeared. A lot of this money has gone to fund the so called militarization of the police. One of the most successful techniques in these seizures is delay minor traffic stops and pressure motorists to consent to vehicle searches or to allow for the arrival of drug/cash sniffing dogs.
After this change to the federal program the cops will be forced to follow more restrictive state laws. Hopefully this will provide less incentive for the cops to abuse the asset forfeiture laws.