BY: JONATHAN ROBERTS
Prosecutors will gather this week in Kampala, Uganda, where the Human Trafficking Institute will host a specialized training on effectively prosecuting Trafficking in Persons (TIP) cases.
This is the first meeting of its kind since the Uganda Director of Public Prosecutions and the Institute entered into a Memorandum of Understanding that dedicates a specialized prosecutor to TIP cases. Experts from Botswana, Belize, and the United States will meet with 10 members of Uganda’s Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) to discuss common obstacles and practical strategies for dealing with these cases.
The two-day training on October 5-6 is an outcome of a Prevention of Trafficking in Persons conference held in Kampala in June. The conference, hosted by Ugandan Judiciary, the Human Trafficking Institute, Pepperdine University School of Law, and Willow International, provided resources for prosecutors, legislators, and law enforcement officials on how to better understand trafficking in persons, how to identify traffickers and their victims, and the role that stakeholders play to combat the issue.
The Institute’s Founding Director John Richmond and Director of Law Enforcement Operations Dave Rogers led multiple sessions, including the myths and facts of trafficking in persons as well as victim identification exercises and steps for investigation. The conference also presented a survivor panel, led by Willow International Director Kelsey Galaway and Uganda Youth Development Link Deputy Director Anna Nabulya.
Over 170 leaders attended the conference, including individuals from the Ugandan Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Gender, Labour, and Social Development, and Judiciary leaders. Each were awarded certificates of completion at the end of the conference.
This week’s training advances the previous conference by specifically addressing issues related to the prosecution of TIP cases. Richmond will discuss international trends in trafficking prosecutions, and Rogers will address an investigator’s perspective on prosecution.