The Director of Public Prosecutions, Barra McGrory QC, today described the trafficking of human beings as a heinous crime which demeans the value of human life and reaffirmed PPS’s commitment to doing all in its power to bring the perpetrators to justice.
The Director was speaking at the official launch of the Public Prosecution Service’s Policy for Prosecuting Cases of Human Trafficking attended by a broad representation of both the statutory and voluntary sectors. The Policy sets out the way in which the PPS deals with cases involving human trafficking and the wide range of other crimes associated with it. It explains the role of the PPS and how it works closely with the police and other investigators in case building and in supporting and protecting victims and witnesses throughout the prosecution process.
Commenting on the Policy, the Director, Barra McGrory QC, said: “The trafficking of human beings is a most heinous crime which demeans the value of human life. The exploitation of vulnerable men, women and children by predatory criminal groups is something that no civilised country should tolerate. It creates victims who are often some of the most vulnerable members of society, separated from family and friends with no access to financial help or support.
“I recognise it is essential that the PPS responds to the concerns of society. I want to assure you that the PPS is fully committed to fulfilling its role in tackling human trafficking, to holding perpetrators to account where the evidence allows and to providing services and information to victims to assist them during the prosecution process”.
Acting Detective Chief Inspector Douglas Grant added that “We must continue to work in partnership, not only locally between the prosecutors and the police, but also on the international stage with European prosecutors and police. This has already enabled us to identify offenders, rescue victims and bring those offenders before the courts in whatever country can enable an effective prosecution”.
Khara Glackin, Solicitor, from the South Tyrone Empowerment Programme stressed: “Labour exploitation and slavery practices are happening in Northern Ireland today. We need a more sophisticated response, through a multi-layered approach. This must join labour and criminal justice responses and integrate protection of human and labour rights into policy and practice.”
Notes to Editors
The Policy is available on the PPS website at http://www.ppsni.gov.uk/Prosecution-Policy-andGuidance---5084.html
Copies of the Policy and other formats are also available upon request to:Head of Information Public Prosecution Service Belfast Chambers Chichester Street Belfast BT6 8EX Tel: 028 90897100 Fax: 028 90897030 Textphone: 028 90897011 E mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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