Case: State ex rel. Goddard v. Western Union Financial Services, Inc.

06-02172 | Arizona state trial court

Filed Date: 2006

Closed Date: 2010

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

In an attempt to curtail the smuggling of undocumented immigrants by trafficking organizations (known as "coyotes") from Mexico to Arizona, the Arizona Attorney General obtained warrants and seized millions of dollars of money that had been wire transferred from Arizona to Mexico. As part of the Attorney General's ongoing criminal investigation into human smuggling and his use of sweeping warrants, the State requested Western Union to produce data reflecting any wire transfers made in an amount…

In an attempt to curtail the smuggling of undocumented immigrants by trafficking organizations (known as "coyotes") from Mexico to Arizona, the Arizona Attorney General obtained warrants and seized millions of dollars of money that had been wire transferred from Arizona to Mexico. As part of the Attorney General's ongoing criminal investigation into human smuggling and his use of sweeping warrants, the State requested Western Union to produce data reflecting any wire transfers made in an amount of $300 or more to any location in Sonora, Mexico from any Western Union location worldwide for a three-year period. The request was made on April 21, 2006, pursuant to Arizona state statute A.R.S. § 13-2315(A), which requires financial institutions to produce records to the Attorney General when the request is accompanied by a sworn statement that the request is made "in order to investigate racketeering." When Western Union challenged the request, the Attorney General indicated that the document request was also made pursuant to a state statue that authorized certain investigations of money transmitters. A.R.S. § 6-1242.

To resolve the issue of enforceability of the subpoena, the parties filed a joint application for review with the Maricopa County Superior Court. The Superior Court (Judge James H. Keppel) issued an order that the request was enforceable, and Western Union appealed. On September 11, 2007, the Court of Appeals (Judge G. Murray Snow) vacated the order and remanded the case. State ex rel. Goddard v. W. Union Fin. Servs., Inc., No. 1 CA-CV 96-0700, 2007 WL 2597670 (Ariz. Ct. App. Sept. 11, 2007). Writing for the majority, Judge Snow found the Attorney General's request to be extremely overbroad and reasoned that enforcement of the request would require Western Union to produce data of wire-transfers to locations that had no connection to Arizona.

Note that while Western Union was litigating the issue of subpoenaed records, it was engaged in other litigation relating to the Arizona Attorney General's attempted seizure of wire transferred funds. See IM-AZ-0007 and IM-AZ-0008.

A year and a half after remand, in March of 2009, the State submitted an application to the Superior Court for an order enforcing subpoenas pursuant to A.R.S. § 13-2315. Over the next two months, the parties briefed the issue, but in May, the State withdrew its application. In March 2010, the parties stipulated to dismissal, and the case was closed.

Summary Authors

Dan Dalton (9/17/2007)

Dan Whitman (11/18/2014)

Related Cases

Western Union Financial Services, Inc. v. Goddard, District of Arizona (2006)

In the Matter of: Monies Described in Appendix One to the Supporting Affidavit, Arizona state trial court (2006)

Torres v. Goddard, District of Arizona (2006)

People


Judge(s)

Keppel, James H. (Arizona)

Snow, G. Murray (Arizona)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Goddard, Terry (Arizona)

Holmes, Cameron H. (Arizona)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Burke, Francis J. (Arizona)

Cole, Charles G. (Arizona)

Gottlieb, Stacey Faith (Arizona)

Tilleman, Karl M. (Arizona)

Wheeless, Steven D. (Arizona)

Judge(s)

Keppel, James H. (Arizona)

Snow, G. Murray (Arizona)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Goddard, Terry (Arizona)

Holmes, Cameron H. (Arizona)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Burke, Francis J. (Arizona)

Cole, Charles G. (Arizona)

Gottlieb, Stacey Faith (Arizona)

Tilleman, Karl M. (Arizona)

Wheeless, Steven D. (Arizona)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

06-02172

Docket (State Court -Maricopa County)

March 15, 2010

March 15, 2010

Docket

No. 1 CA-CV 06-0700

Opinion

Arizona state appellate court

166 P.3d 916, 2007 WL 2597670, 2007 Ariz.App.LEXIS 178

Sept. 11, 2007

Sept. 11, 2007

Order/Opinion

Resources

Docket

Last updated Aug. 1, 2022, 3:02 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: Arizona

Case Type(s):

Immigration and/or the Border

Key Dates

Filing Date: 2006

Closing Date: 2010

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

State of Arizona

Plaintiff Type(s):

State Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Western Union Financial Services, Inc., Private Entity/Person

Case Details

Causes of Action:

State law

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Mixed

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Form of Settlement:

Voluntary Dismissal

Amount Defendant Pays: 0

Issues

General:

Records Disclosure

Immigration/Border:

Constitutional rights

Criminal prosecution