CHICAGO — Some aldermen are asking if the time and money spent going after gang assets is even worth it as Mayor Lightfoot continues to defend one of her strategies to fight crime.

The Victims Justice Ordinance was introduced in September and would allow the city to sue people involved in gangs and seize assets and property bought with what the mayor calls “blood money.”

The move is something Cook County and the federal government do alongside some criminal cases, but not all of them. So the ordinance would allow the city’s lawyers to fill in the gap.

Fifty attorneys have signed a letter urging Mayor Lightfoot to withdraw the ordinance, and the Office of the Cook County Public Defender has acted similarly.

There are more than 500 cases from the past few years the ordinance applies to, and an estimated $1.2 million dollars — for an average of about $2,300 a case the city could seize.

“I think we really need to see more information about exactly how this is going to complement the criminal investigations that are continuing to happen at the state and federal level,” Ald. Matt Martin (47th Ward) said.

Critics of the ordinance fear the move will lead to the over-policing of Black and Brown communities and target people who may not be involved in such criminal enterprises. 

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Half the money recovered through the ordinance would go to victims’ assistance and the other half would go to general revenue.