Institute on the Prosecution of Human Trafficking

State Specific
March 13 - 16, 2012

The Institute on the Prosecution of Human Trafficking (IPHT) was designed to raise prosecutors’ awareness about the dynamics and indicators of human trafficking and challenge participants to reevaluate their approach to detecting and prosecuting human trafficking crimes. IPHT explored the complex issues faced by prosecutors in identifying, investigating, and prosecuting human trafficking while balancing offender accountability with the impact of criminal prosecution on victims. In addition to practical case evaluation and litigation skills, the curriculum addressed the development and improvement of culturally and linguistically specific policies and procedures; examined the benefits of developing a coordinated victim-centered community response; explained relevant medical and mental health consequences of human trafficking and offered guidance on the use of experts in these fields; explored ethical issues; and offered participants the ability to redefine outcomes and the very nature of justice in human trafficking cases. IPHT used hypothetical case problems, role-playing exercises, small group discussions, mini-lectures, and faculty demonstrations. Rather than merely attending a series of legal lectures, participants examined their current attitudes and practices by employing active case evaluation, preparation, and trial skills to identify and respond to human trafficking in the varied contexts in which it occurs. The highly interactive format enabled prosecutors from different jurisdictions, with varied levels of experience, to learn from one another and engage in "real-life" scenarios that are readily transferable to their everyday work.

The Institute on the Prosecution of Human Trafficking was hosted at the Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel in Philadelphia, PA. Seventeen (17) prosecutors from across the state of Pennsylvania were in attendance and qualified participants for twenty-seven (27) continuing legal education credit hours including one (1) hour of ethics. Participant comments collected from evaluations included:

  • “Best training I have been to in my 9 years as a prosecutor."
  • "It was great to have a nationwide perspective, as well as a statewide perspective on Human Trafficking. Hearing what works, what does not work and what resources are out there is invaluable."
  • "I’m leaving with a foundation of knowledge and returning to work with a new eye for spotting these issues on Human Trafficking. I now have tools to approach these cases and identify them."
  • "Fantastic instructors and an interesting topic."
  • "The course highlighted the problem of Human Trafficking and its various forms. It also gave excellent direction in identifying and combatting Human Trafficking."

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