Trafficking in persons training for prosecutors and police officers

The Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) welcomes Professor Susan Kreston, U.S. expert on trafficking in persons (TIP), to Kyrgyzstan February 4-6 to conduct training for prosecutors and police in Bishkek.  The three-day training, which includes both lectures and case studies, focuses on forensic interviewing and the identification, referral, and protection of victims.  Professor Kreston will also discuss recommendations in the State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons Report.  In addition, several participants in the training will visit Washington for three weeks in March for an International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP) on TIP to meet with their American counterparts and see first-hand how this terrible problem is addressed in the United States.

In November 2014, Melis Turganbaev, Minister of the Interior, requested that INL provide TIP training for police officers.  The head of the Prosecutor’s Training Center and the head of the unit in the Prosecutor’s Office for the Protection of Children’s’ Rights were also strongly supportive and eager to participate in this important program.  Based on our solid partnership and positive response to this training, INL looks forward to developing further training opportunities tailored to the needs of officers and prosecutors across Kyrgyzstan.

Trafficking in persons is the use of force, fraud, or coercion to exploit a person for labor or prostitution.  In addition, any prostitution of children under the age of 18, regardless of circumstances, is considered trafficking.  It does not include trafficking of human organs or fraudulent adoption unless coercion is involved.  Despite popular misconceptions, movement of victims is not relevant — trafficking may occur across international borders, or within a country, city, or neighborhood.  More than 20 million people worldwide are victims of trafficking, but only a small percentage of these victims are identified and receive the protection and support they deserve.

Professor Kreston is a Fulbright Professor & Research Fellow in Law and Psychology at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa.  She is particularly suited to conduct training on this subject as a researcher, teacher, and author on criminal justice with a focus on human trafficking and crimes against women and children.  She has worked in Africa, Europe, Southern Asia, and the Dominican Republic on trafficking and related issues.  Previously, as a professor of law in the United States, Professor Kreston created and taught courses on crimes against children as well as cybercrime.  She has spoken and published extensively in the United States and internationally on these topics.  From 1997 to 2002, Professor Kreston was Deputy Director of the U.S. National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse, where she led the Child Abduction and Sexual Exploitation Unit.  Her work there focused on trafficked children, child pornography, and forensic & medical evidence in child abuse prosecutions.