Conference of Western Attorneys General
The California Attorney General’s Office is an active member of the Conference of Western Attorneys General (CWAG). CWAG is comprised of Attorneys General of 15 western states, three Pacific territories and 13 associate member states. CWAG's primary function is to provide a forum for the western state Attorneys General to cultivate knowledge, cooperate on subjects of mutual concern, and coordinate actions and programs which improve the quality of legal services available to CWAG members and their constituencies.
CWAG administers the Alliance Partnership, a cooperative program aimed at strengthening the legal systems of both the U.S. and Mexico, operated in association with the Council of State Governments, the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG), the U.S. State Department's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and other public and private entities. The Alliance Partnership focuses on promoting collaboration and training among state attorneys general from both countries, usually through bi-national exchanges and workshops organized through CWAG — in conjunction with NAAG, Mexico's Federal Attorney General's Office (PGR), Mexico's National Conference of Attorneys General and Mexico State Attorneys General. These efforts help establish and nurture cross-jurisdictional cooperation on many law enforcement issues, including human trafficking, money laundering, transnational criminal organizations, and training and capacity building. A significant outcome of the collaborations is the execution of Memorandums of Understandings (MOUs) between by states in the U.S. with states in Mexico –such as New Mexico with Chihuahua, Idaho with Morelos, and Arizona with Sonora, and others. These MOUs acknowledge, for example, that human trafficking is a transnational criminal enterprise that recognizes neither boundaries nor borders and requires an intense collaboration between border state governments. The MOUs also include commitments to develop compatible strategies in prevention, information and intelligence sharing, education and awareness, and law enforcement efforts through mentoring and cross-border working groups.
In 2011, CWAG produced, in association with Arizona State University North American Center for Transborder Studies, a bi-national, multi-state survey on human trafficking. The report, released in the summer of 2011, examines existing and potential legislation and administrative actions on the part of key U.S. – Mexico state-level government stakeholders.
In March 2012, CWAG brought 16 Mexican State Attorney Generals, as well as 5 Mexican State Assistant Attorney Generals and prosecutors to participate in the NAAG 2012 Presidential Summit, Pillars of Hope: Attorneys General Unite Against Human Trafficking. In addition, CWAG facilitated the participation of Angelica Herrera Rivero, Director of the Special Prosecutions Unit for Crimes of Violence Against Women & Human Trafficking (FEVIMTRA) from PGR to speak on the issue of human trafficking. And in July 2012, at CWAG’s Annual Summer Conference in July 2012, experts from its member states, including the California Office of the Attorney General and from the PGR presented information regarding current advances in the fight against trans-border crime including human trafficking and money laundering.
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CONFERENCE OF WESTERN ATTORNEYS GENERAL