Announcements, information and updates from CWAG Members and Associates
February 7, 2019
Articles on topics relevant to the work of Attorneys General around the nation.
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Using Technology to Improve Social Justice
Building on CWAG's Cyber Security efforts, General Balderas’s Initiative will focus on bringing together leaders from the corporate, nonprofit and government sectors to utilize technology to strengthen our economy and improve public safety outcomes. Expanded collaboration among leading privacy and security researchers, academics, industry representatives, consumer advocates, law enforcement and government entities will address national and international cyber security concerns. 
This very important educational initiative is one which explores and expands the multifaceted elements of implementing cyber security programs and protocols. Further, through this effort, impacts on society and often, on those who are most vulnerable, are brought to light as it intersects with public policy, data security and law enforcement actions. Finally, we will examine the gig economy and its impact of disruptive technology as it relates to justice.

The basis of this initiative will include but not be limited to the following;

Protecting Children, Families and Consumers:
  • Enhanced enforcement of child online privacy protection laws
  • Utilization of technology to assist law enforcement in combatting criminal activities such as fraud and money laundering with the use of biometric facial recognition protocols
  • Utilization of technology to address issues specific to economic disparity like tax refunds and expedited Medicare/Medicaid payments
Protecting Personal Data Privacy:
  • Strengthening and collaboration of data breach notification laws
  • Implementation of safeguards against scams and the emerging electronic consumer marketplace
Protecting Against Human Trafficking:
  • Creation of a multi-district communications solution that uses secured and encrypted communications for investigators
  • Utilization of a technological tools which enhance and strengthen our ability to conduct investigations and communicate with agents in multiple jurisdictions without fear of having those channels compromised

Through this initiative, state attorneys generals will jointly address cyber security as one of the greatest threats to our nation. It is envisioned that an advisory board of stakeholders to include corporate, nonprofit and technology leaders will be assembled to provide support and input relating to our economy and the various public safety components of the initiative. General Balderas’s will also use the experienced gained by his office through their current bi-national, multi-state cyber security pilot project supporting the efforts of law enforcement across our international lines. 

Chair’s Initiative dates to be announced soon.
New Mexico AG Balderas Addresses Joint Legislature on Important Child Protection Legislation on Law Enforcement Day
Attorney General recognizes important work and partnerships with law enforcement, as well as brave survivors of abuse in New Mexico
February 6, 2019

Attorney General Hector Balderas delivered an address to the joint session of the New Mexico Legislature. The address focused on important legislation to protect children in New Mexico, and included brave survivors of abuse in New Mexico.
Wisconsin DOJ & DPI Launch New Online Safety Tool for Families
February 5, 2019

The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, in partnership with the Department of Public Instruction (DPI), is launching interact!, a new online safety resource for families.

Interact! is an online, interactive e-course created for parents and guardians to complete with their children with a goal of sparking basic online safety discussions in the home. This module takes approximately 30 minutes to complete, and provides parents with the opportunity to review their own tech use to set a good example; interactive activities to complete alongside their children; and follow-up resources and activities to keep the discussions going. 
Texas AG Pax­ton Files Ami­cus Brief Call­ing on Supreme Court to Rein in the Admin­is­tra­tive State and Uphold the Sep­a­ra­tion of Powers
February 4, 2019

Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a friend-of-the-court brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider Chevron deference, the doctrine that requires federal courts to defer to agency interpretations of statutes. Attorney General Paxton urged the high court to review the D.C. Circuit’s decision in United Parcel Service v. Postal Regulatory Commission, which deferred to an administrative agency’s view of the law without analyzing the underlying statute Congress passed.
Nevada Attorney General Ford Warns Against Ticket Reseller, Events Scams
January 29, 2019

Nevada Attorney General Aaron D. Ford warns consumers to be alert when purchasing tickets from a reseller or for events advertised online. Recently, event-related scams are on the rise, and Nevada’s popularity as a tourist destination makes it a prime target for selling fake events and counterfeit tickets.
North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein Reaches $25 Million Settlement with Abbott Labs
February 6, 2019

Attorney General Josh Stein announced that he has reached a $25 million settlement with Abbott Laboratories over allegations that the company paid kickbacks and engaged in off-label marketing tactics to improperly promote its drug, TriCor. The Attorney General is joined in this settlement by the federal government and six other states.

A National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units (NAMFCU) team participated in the investigation and conducted the settlement negotiations with Abbott on behalf of the states. In addition to North Carolina, the team included representatives from Attorneys General for the states of California, Illinois, Nevada, Maryland, Michigan, and Texas.
Attorney General Aaron Ford Warns of Tax Season Scams
February 6, 2019

Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford warns consumers to be vigilant in protecting themselves from phony Internal Revenue Service (IRS) scams as the 2019 tax season begins.

“As tax day approaches, scammers are finding new ways to take advantage of this stressful time,” said AG Ford. “This week, I received a phony IRS call, which should serve as a reminder to each of us that we must be vigilant in recognizing and reporting scams like this. Awareness is the best form of prevention.”
Oklahoma Attorney General Hunter Announces Opioid Commission to Reconvene, Appoints Two New Members
January 30, 2019

Attorney General Mike Hunter announced the Oklahoma Commission on Opioid Abuse will continue its work studying the state’s opioid overdose and addiction epidemic.

In addition to discussing more ways to address the ongoing opioid crisis, the commission will welcome two new legislative members in Sen. Roger Thompson, R-Okemah, and Rep. Chris Kannady, R-Oklahoma City. They are replacing Sen. AJ Griffin and Rep. Tim Downing, who didn’t seek reelection to their seats last year.
Wisconsin AG Kaul Statement Following US Attorneys Notification to Prescribers
February 5, 2019

U.S. Attorneys Scott Blader and Matthew Krueger notified medical professionals with relatively high levels of opioid prescriptions to review their prescribing practices. Following this action Attorney General Josh Kaul issued the following statement:

“Thank you U.S. Attorneys Krueger and Blader for sending these notices out to providers. While the medical community has played an important role in addressing the opioid epidemic, we need to ensure that all medical professionals are prescribing responsibly,” said Attorney General Josh Kaul.
Attorney General Jennings To Take On Opioid Makers, Distributors
Delaware Law Weekly
February 5, 2019

A Delaware judge has blocked an attempt by a contingent of leading pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors to escape a civil lawsuit by the state, which seeks to hold the companies liable for their alleged role in the ongoing opioid epidemic.

Superior Court Judge Mary M. Johnston said in a 41-page opinion that Attorney General Kathy Jennings’ office had supported the state’s allegations in the lawsuit, which accused the firms, including Purdue Pharma L.P. and Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc., of misleading the public about the dangers associated with painkillers.
Idaho Supreme Court Upholds Medicaid Expansion, Rejects Idaho Freedom Foundation Suit
The Idaho Statesman
February 5, 2019

The Idaho Supreme Court this week said that Medicaid expansion, passed by voters as ballot Proposition 2, is legal.

The court ruled against the Idaho Freedom Foundation in its lawsuit, which argued that Prop 2 was written in a way that gave too much power to the federal government and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.

Medicaid expansion will make Idaho’s working poor — those in the “Medicaid gap” — eligible for public health insurance in 2020.
North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein Announces Survivor Act
January 29, 2019

Attorney General Josh Stein, joined by bill sponsors Sen. Warren Daniel and Reps. Jamie Boles, Carson Smith, Mary Belk, and Billy Richardson unveiled a new legislative proposal, the Standing Up for Rape Victims Act, or Survivor Act, which mandates submitting sexual assault kits for testing to an accredited lab for local law enforcement agencies. Doing so will deliver justice to more victims and prevent backlogs from occurring in the future. The legislation also provides $6 million in funding over the next two years to address the current backlog of sexual assault kits in local law enforcement custody across the state.

Attorney General Stein also announced a $2 million grant from the Governor’s Crime Commission to outsource approximately 3,000 kits.
AG Paxton Offers Assistance to Texas District and County Attorneys as They Investigate Catholic Priests Accused of Child Sexual Abuse
February 1, 2019

Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a letter offering his office’s assistance to all district and county attorneys in Texas as they prepare to investigate cases involving clergymen accused of sexually abusing children. On Thursday, the 15 Texas Catholic Dioceses publicly identified nearly 300 priests against whom credible allegations of sexual abuse have been made.
Police Seize Almost 7,000 Pounds of Cannabis From a Truck
But the company that bought it says it's all legal
February 6, 2019

Idaho State Police says it seized 6,701 pounds of illicit marijuana from a truck passing through the state last month. The Colorado company that bought the plants in Oregon says it's legal hemp. But the truck driver caught in the middle is now facing felony marijuana trafficking charges.

Rolling into the East Boise Point of Entry weigh station on January 24, Denis Palamarchuck's tractor-trailer was stopped by an Idaho state trooper to conduct a routine inspection. The truck's bill of lading listed the goods being hauled as hemp.
Washington Attorney General Ferguson Updates Student Loan Survival Guide
AG-requested Student Loan Advocate now available to help borrowers
January 30, 2019

Attorney General Bob Ferguson released an updated Student Loan Survival Guide, which provides tips and resources for those impacted by student loans, including high school students thinking about taking out student loans, former college students making repayments and parents who cosigned loans.

Among updates to the guide is information about the new Student Loan Advocate at the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC), a position created by AG-request legislation last year. The advocate is now available to help student loan borrowers understand the terms of their loans and options available to them, such as loan forgiveness and deferment.
Attorney General Becerra Urges California Businesses to Use Available Resources to Help Prevent Human Trafficking
January 30, 2019

During National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra reminds California businesses to post notices informing the public and trafficking victims of resources available to help combat slavery and human trafficking. Up-to-date digital copies of these notices are available for free on the Attorney General’s website.
Department of Justice Collaborates to Provide Human Trafficking Awareness Training to Medical Professionals in Montana
DOJ and American Unchained Working to Educate Montana’s Doctors, Nurses on Identification of Human Trafficking Victims
February 5, 2019

As part of his ongoing efforts to end human trafficking in Montana, Attorney General Tim Fox introduced a Continuing Education (CE) training at St. Peter’s Health Regional Medical Center in Helena today. The CE was presented by The America Unchained Project, a human trafficking awareness campaign aimed at educating medical professionals who may be likely to come into contact with human trafficking victims in a clinical setting.
Florida Attorney General Moody Sponsors Resolution Recognizing Human Trafficking Awareness Month
January 29, 2019

During a Florida Cabinet Meeting, Attorney General Ashley Moody presented a resolution recognizing January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month in Florida. Attorney General Moody commends the legislature, law enforcement, local governments, community organizations and citizens fighting to end human trafficking in Florida.
Northern Mariana Islands Receives Donation of Typhoon Relief Items

Last October, a category 5 typhoon devastated the Northern Mariana Islands. With great tenacity, Attorney General Manibusan, along with the CNMI OAG, joined together on a mission to rebuild, organizing donations and safe areas of shelter for those affected. CWAG lent our support with a shipment of emergency supplies. It is in these times, we see the value in our continued commitment to one another. We've included some photos and the OAG's response below:


On behalf of Attorney General Edward Manibusan, Deputy AG Lillian Tenorio, AAG's and staff - we would like to send our most heartfelt thanks to everyone at CWAG! We are so humbled and appreciative, most especially blessed for all you have done on our behalf. Thank you for your kindness and generosity. Forever grateful!

With gratitude,
Former Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Kilmartin Joins International Consulting Practice InterActive Global Solutions
February 4, 2019

 InterActive Global Solutions LLC (IGS) is proud to add former Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Kilmartin to its team as Senior Policy Advisor. In this role and effective immediately, Kilmartin will deepen IGS’ expertise and scope of services for clients in emerging markets.

In addition to serving two terms as Rhode Island’s Attorney General where he oversaw a team of 237, Kilmartin’s longstanding and distinguished career as a public servant includes twenty years in the Rhode Island General Assembly, retiring as Majority Whip; twenty-four years as a police officer, retiring as Captain; and over ten years as a collegiate professor. Kilmartin’s bi-partisan nature and collaborative working style has earned him respect on both sides of the political aisle.
Former Connecticut Atty General George Jepsen & Former Chief Deputy Atty General Perry Zinn Rowthorn Join Firm

Shipman & Goodwin LLP announced that Connecticut’s immediate past Attorney General George Jepsen and the state’s immediate past Chief Deputy Attorney General Perry Zinn Rowthorn have joined the firm as partners in its Hartford office.

The firm also announced the launch of a State Attorneys General Practice Group under the leadership of the two former state officials. The new practice will represent corporate clients in the full range of investigations and enforcement actions brought by state attorneys general throughout the country, including government inquiries, investigations, litigation, and settlement monitoring. The practice will represent businesses of all sizes and individuals in critical areas such as data privacy, consumer protection, antitrust and environmental regulation, among others. In addition to Jepsen and Rowthorn, the practice will tap a deep bench of seasoned Shipman & Goodwin attorneys experienced in privacy and data protection, antitrust, consumer protection, health care, financial services, environment and energy, state false claims acts, charities regulation, government investigations and preparing amicus briefs.

Jepsen acted as Connecticut's 24th Attorney General, serving 2 consecutive 4-year terms before choosing, in 2018, not to seek a third term. Rowthorn served in a variety of high-level roles in the Office of the Connecticut Attorney General over the last 19 years, including the last 5 years as chief deputy.
Updated American Indian Law Deskbook Is Now Available

The American Indian Law Deskbook  is a concise, direct, and easy-to-understand handbook on Indian law. The chapter authors of this book are experienced state lawyers who have been involved in Indian law for many years.

American Indian Law Deskbook  addresses the areas of Indian law most relevant to the practitioner.
Topics include:
  • Definitions of Indians and Indian tribes
  • Indian lands
  • Criminal, civil regulatory, and civil adjudicatory jurisdiction
  • Civil rights
  • Indian water rights
  • Fish and wildlife
  • Environmental regulation
  • Taxation
  • Gaming
  • Indian Child Welfare Act and tribal-state cooperative agreements