From the prosecutor’s perspective, obtaining the full cooperation of the victim is often the most challenging aspect of a human trafficking prosecution. Trafficking victims are frequently in need of money to support themselves and their families. The possibility that a victim of trafficking may be entitled to receive compensation from the court or State can be a crucial part of an overall strategy to secure victim cooperation in the criminal justice process.
As such, it is incumbent upon prosecutors to inform victims of their right to seek compensation, explain the filing process to them, and, where appropriate and consistent with national law and procedures, assist the victim in applying for compensation. This Warnath Group Practice Guide “Victim Compensation: The Role of the Prosecutor” explains the right to compensation under international law, considers practical issues and barriers in seeking compensation, provides examples of national legal responses to ensure trafficking victims receive compensation, and offers strategic guidance to prosecutors in seeking compensation.