[Update Below] Yesterday's police crackdown on SoHo's street vendors is turning into a serious headache for a slew of licensed peddlers. After police from the 1st Precinct showed up on Broadway yesterday and started shutting down vendors for things like being inches under 20' from a building entrance and having tables that were "too tall," they came back to the bewildered workers and confiscated their carts and merchandise, too. This is not a small thing when your merchandise is your livelihood!

After the raid, a number of the effected vendors and some reps from The Street Vendor Project went over to the precinct to try and reclaim their property. But it wasn't that simple. Though the individual police were apparently very apologetic about the circumstance (just following orders, y'know?) they couldn't give anything back until it had all been sorted and processed. As the group arrived they found the carts outside being emptied by police officers.

So today many returned to get vouchers for their property. According to Sean Basinski of the SVP, "Some are still waiting for their decisions from the court, but others seem to be getting their vouchers and stuff back." What this latest raid means for these licensed vendors in the longterm will be much clearer tomorrow, when many plan to head back to Broadway. Meanwhile, now the SVP is getting ready, assuming the vendors agree, to file suit over the illegal confiscations. Something they even admit "will drag through the courts for years and take countless hours of our time and the city lawyers’ time." But an illegal confiscation is still illegal.

Still, at least some neighbors—who cite scofflaw vendors sleeping in their carts and bothering brick-and-mortar businesses—seem quite pleased with this development. Somebody should be, we guess. The NYPD's press office had no comment on the raid.

Update: We're told by an SVP employee that the four vendor's the group represented in court saw their tickets dismissed today (and that it appeared other vendors were seeing the same result). The SVP vendors are now "on their way to try to get the merchandise back."