Arizona to receive funds for border security

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PHOENIX -- Law enforcement agencies in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas can begin to submit applications for a portion of $50 million in grant money for border security.

Money received by the border states will go toward the investigation and prosecution of various border-related crimes, including money laundering, drug smuggling, and human and arms trafficking.

Money will also be designated for officer training in the U.S. and Mexico.

According to a statement released by Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard’s office, each state is guaranteed a minimum of $7 million.

The cash comes from a $94 million settlement between Goddard and Western Union reached earlier this year.  The deal was struck in response to complaints that Western Union agents permitted illegally obtained money to be transferred into Mexico.

All grant applications will be reviewed by Attorney General Office representatives.  In Arizona, additional representatives from the Phoenix Police Department, the Department of Public Safety and the Department of Financial Institutions will also participate in the application reviews.

Settlement money is also funding the creation of a 10-to-12 member border prosecution team in Tucson.