Englewood, CO–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–January 10, 2007–The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU), announced today that an Arizona court has ruled that the state of Arizona does not have the authority to seize money transfers originated outside the state and intended for payment in Mexico. In addition, the court prohibited the state from attempting to seize future money transfers not sent from or intended for payment in the state. The Arizona Attorney General had attempted to seize money transfers originating in 26 U.S. states for payment in Mexico.
Senders of the funds were given no notice of the seizures, and were required to contact the state to prove that the funds were legally obtained before they would be returned.
According to Western Union President and CEO Christina Gold, the decision speaks strongly in favor of a consumer’s right to send funds without fear of unreasonable seizure. “Western Union is a trusted friend of the Latino community, and we’re very pleased with today’s ruling,” said Gold. “We pursued this case in court because we feel strongly about defending the rights of our consumers.
“While we believe that the judge made the right decision in this case, we will continue to work cooperatively with the state of Arizona in meeting its legitimate law enforcement needs,” Gold added.
Gold also stated that the company’s defense of its consumers interests comes as a result of its long-standing commitment to the communities it serves. Since 2001, the company has contributed millions of dollars to community groups dedicated to enhancing opportunities for Latinos to live in and assimilate to life in the United States.
In 2006, Western Union launched its 4X1 initiative, which builds on the success of the 3×1 program established by the Mexican government in partnership with Mexican hometown associations in the United States. Under the program, Western Union contributes one dollar for every dollar contributed by the hometown associations. The funds also are matched by Mexico government entities at the federal, state and municipal levels. The aggregate funds are used to support economic development projects such as schools, utility service and other public projects in cities and states throughout Mexico.
“Western Union is the first private sector company to participate in the 3×1 – now 4×1 – initiative,” said Gold. “It’s focused on creating new economic development and employment opportunities that are enhancing the economic viability of our consumers’ home towns so that migration can be a choice for them, rather than a necessity.”
About Western Union
The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU) is a leader in global money transfer services. Together with its affiliates, Orlandi Valuta and Vigo, Western Union provides consumers with fast, reliable and convenient ways to send and receive money around the world, as well as send payments and purchase money orders. It operates through a network of approximately 285,000 Agent locations in over 200 countries and territories. Famous for its pioneering telegraph services, the original Western Union dates back to 1851. For more information, visit http://www.westernunion.com.