Arizona needs a new approach to fight illegal trade

By Guest Opinion

Originally posted on

Tony Bradley, president and CEO of the Arizona Trucking Association and USA-IT partner, discusses illegal trade’s impact on Arizona and why cooperation is needed to combat this crime:

“Unfortunately, Arizonans are already and heavily subjected to illegal trade. We share a 370-mile border with Mexico, with a large portion of the border being open, sparsely populated and unable to be continuously monitored by border enforcement agencies. With the border being used extensively by drug trafficking organizations, significant quantities of methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, and marijuana are smuggled from Mexico into Arizona.”

“The same criminals who traffic humans or drugs will smuggle anything that earns a profit, such as counterfeit apparel, prescription medication and even service parts for household appliances. In fact, criminal organizations often traffic in commodities that are low-risk of consequences but still earn high-profits, like these, to bolster their more nefarious activities. Taking enforcement actions against these seemingly petty crimes will help to destabilize these criminal operations. Additionally, our state will recoup the hundreds of millions of dollars in revenues – lost every year to these criminals – that would have supported Arizonan businesses and neighborhoods.”

“Public actors, the private sector and civil society alike all have a role to play, which is why the Arizona Trucking Association has joined United to Safeguard America from Illegal Trade (USA-IT), a coalition of brand enforcement leaders, law enforcement, and other thought leaders to combat illegal trade through information and resources, training programs, and raising public awareness of illegal trade’s harmful impacts.”

Read more here.