Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard says law enforcement agencies in the four states bordering Mexico can start applying now for parts of $50 million in grants targeting border security.
The cash comes from a $94 million settlement Goddard reached with Western Union in February The deal resolved complaints that the company had unscrupulous agents that allowed drug and human smugglers to send ill-gotten gains to Mexico.
The grants can be used to investigate and prosecute money-laundering, human-trafficking, drug-smuggling and arms-trafficking crimes. Agencies in Texas, California and New Mexico agencies are guaranteed at least $7 million each.
A new Arizona border prosecution team with about a dozen members is also being set up in Tucson using settlement money.