Wed Apr 01 2015   
Law Clinics

Criminal Prosecution Clinic

State of Arizona


Criminal Division

Border Crimes Enforcement Section



AZ Attorney General Clinic - Law 643K

Law School: Dean Marc Miller

AGO Contact:

3 credits - P/F; Rule 38 eligible

Criminal Procedure, Evidence, MPRE


The Border Crimes Enforcement Section, headquartered in Tucson, represents the State of Arizona in all matters related to Arizona Revised Statutes Title 13 for which the Attorney General has jurisdiction pursuant to A.R.S. '21-422 or where BCS is asked to assist or to prosecute a case by a southern Arizona County Attorney.  The division takes a pro-active role in effective law enforcement by providing federal and state law enforcement agencies with timely legal advice on investigative procedures as well as training to law enforcement officers on relevant legal issues.  The section's close working relationship with law enforcement agencies allows for completion of long-term investigations and successful prosecution of large scale criminal enterprises and complex fraud schemes.

BCS maintains an expertise in fighting border-related crime through use of court-authorized electronic interception, focusing its efforts against the Mexican cartels and U.S.-based transportation cells involved in the smuggling of drugs, weapons, money and humans across Arizona's southern border.  The initiative brings unprecedented resources and sophistication to the ongoing fight against organized criminal operations on the border and puts Arizona in a much stronger position to combat the violent cartels that threaten Arizona. 

BCS also specializes in complex financial prosecutions and is a representative on the F.B.I. Financial Task Force.  The section prosecutes white collar fraud, including mortgage fraud, securities fraud, and public corruption cases, along with identity theft, social security fraud, AHCCCS fraud, manufacturing of fraudulent credit cards and many other economic crimes.

BCS also emphasizes prosecution of elder financial exploitation and, more recently, physical abuse crimes, and supports education of law enforcement and the public through participation in TASA (the Task Force Against Senior Abuse), SAFEE (Stop Abuse and Financial Exploitation of the Elderly), and both the Pima County Elder Abuse Task Force and the statewide Arizona Elder Abuse Task Force.  BCS retains active prosecution of these cases, as many law enforcement agencies do not perceive the criminal aspect of these victimizations, and its participation in coalitions and groups help educate police agencies and local county attorney offices about how to recognize and prosecute the financial crimes. 



Permission of the Instructor. Applicants will submit a personal statement explaining their interest in prosecution and any related experience. Interviews with the instructor and with members of the Attorney General's staff may also be required. Fingerprint clearance and background check is required. Students are required to maintain strict confidentiality to protect the integrity of cases and may not simultaneously participate in a clinic which presents a conflict of interest. Students must have taken Criminal Procedure and must also have taken or be enrolled in Evidence and Legal Profession.

Recommended Courses

Criminal Law, Criminal Investigation and Discovery. Corporations and Income Tax also may be useful.


In this clinic, students will work on various matters handled by the Arizona Attorney General's Office, including drug prosecutions, electronic interception cases, public corruption, white collar, financial fraud, financial and/or physical elder abuse, and other conflict prosecutions including but not limited to homicide, child abuse, arson and home invasions. The students will work with prosecutors and law enforcement to assess evidence and evaluate potential violations of law, draft indictments, evaluate potential evidentiary problems, participate in motion practice, plea and/or settlement negotiations, trial preparation, and, if necessary, trials. Students will work with and under the supervision of Vice Dean Marc Miller, Section Chief Counsel Kim Ortiz and other Assistant Attorneys General. Because of the lengthy nature of investigations and litigation in the Attorney General's Office, students are required to enroll for two semesters. Clinic students will be given preference to continue in the summer as Interns.


West's Arizona Criminal Law and Rules (current).

Course Format

The Clinic meets as a group once a week for instruction by AAGs on general areas of criminal practice, including prosecutorial ethics. Students also will meet as a group or in subgroups once a week for 1 to 3 hours to discuss the cases. All students are expected to be aware of all related cases being worked on by other clinic students. At the weekly meeting, students will share developments, problems, ethical issues and concerns and other matters of interest. The cases the clinic participates in are often complex. Accordingly, students should be prepared, at least periodically, to spend substantial amounts of time on research, writing, appearing in court, and in other case-related tasks. The general rule is 50 hours per unit of credit, which would amount to 150 hours; this is a floo). Some or all of this time will be at the Attorney General's office. Students who satisfy the requirements are encouraged to appear in court under Rule 38(d).

Written Assignments

Students will draft multiple memoranda and indictments during the course of the clinic. Students will also keep logs of their work.

Type of Exam


Basis of Grading

Class Participation 15%; Written and/or Courtroom Work 50%; Legal Research & Analysis, Issue Identification, & Case-related Field Work 35%

This course satisfies the Professional Skills curricular requirement.



Updated: 01/17/2013