Cameroon Programs

Criminal Law Reform and Anti-Human Trafficking

Development of Legal Framework for Prosecuting Traffickers

ABA ROLI will create a reference manual setting out a comprehensive strategy for prosecuting traffickers in Cameroon. Naturally, this manual will detail the provisions and procedures of the 2005 child trafficking law, but significant emphasis will also be placed on alternative methods of prosecution. Thus ABA ROLI will also provide information on the international statutes prohibiting trafficking which are applicable under Cameroonian law. Furthermore, traffickers typically break a significant amount of conventional laws as a result of their business. Thus, ABA ROLI will detail the bars of evidence and criminal procedures for prosecuting traffickers under such crimes as rape, kidnapping, battery, and child neglect. The goal of this manual will be to provide prosecutorial options. Those seeking to convict traffickers will have ready access to a portfolio of criminal offences, and standards of evidence, under which to convict traffickers. These manuals will be widely distributed.

Trainings on Trafficking for Members of the Justice Community

ABA ROLI will conduct a series of trainings on trafficking for police and immigration officers, prosecutors, and judges. The purpose of these trainings will be two-fold. Firstly, the trainings will describe both the characteristics of trafficking and techniques for identifying traffickers. Thus this segment of the trainings will promote understanding of the phenomenon of trafficking and will increase the likelihood that traffickers will be treated as serious criminals. The second portion of the trainings will depend on the target audience. For police and immigration officers, the emphasis will be placed on investigating trafficking cases. ABA ROLI will draw on its extensive experience in this area, having engaged in long term police training projects in Kenya and Nigeria. For prosecutors and judges, the trainings will emphasize the legal dimension of trafficking. ABA ROLI will draw extensive on its reference manual in describing the legal options in prosecuting traffickers.

Identifying Needs of the Legal Community

ABA ROLI will seek to establish better lines of communication between different stakeholders in the struggle against trafficking. The goal of this segment of the project is to ensure that each group of actors (NGOs, police, legal professionals) understands not only their own role in stopping trafficking but also the role of other actors. ABA ROLI has found in the past that this type of sensitization greatly increases the ability of anti-trafficking forces to co-ordinate their efforts, ensuring not only an efficient use of resources, but also that efforts will no falter due to miscommunications.

To this end, ABA ROLI will hold an anti-trafficking conference that will unite the various stakeholders involved in trafficking in persons. In additional to promoting discussion on coordinating anti-trafficking efforts, this conference will be designed as a cross-disciple forum on techniques for combating trafficking. ABA ROLI will draw on this conference to organize a working group on trafficking which will incorporate input from NGOs, police, judges, and civil servants. The goal of this working group will be to create a roadmap for anti-trafficking efforts that takes account of the various ideas and reservations of key stakeholders. Thus future reformers will be able to plan further anti-trafficking efforts in full cognizance of the political viability of their proposed efforts.

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