Workshop Description: Congress, in the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), created the U visa as a tool to help police and prosecutors encourage immigrant crime victims to report crimes and cooperate in criminal investigations and prosecutions. The U visa has been extremely helpful in the prosecution of domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, and human trafficking cases involving immigrant victims. Participants will learn the range of misdemeanor and felony crimes for which immigrant victims can receive U visa protection and the benefits of early U visa certification. The workshop covered information developed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on U visa certification and participants will receive copies of the DHS Resource Guide and T and U Visa Certification and the U Visa Certification Toolkit for Law Enforcement Officers and Prosecutors. An array of issues particular to prosecutions of cases involving immigrant crime victims and U visa applicants/recipients were highlighted. These include successful pretrial and trial strategies to properly respond to discovery requests; limit introduction of irrelevant evidence at trial; respond to defense arguments regarding the victim’s immigration or U Visa status; and conduct jury selection to identify potential juror bias against immigrants.
Law Enforcement Training Materials: http://niwaplibrary.wcl.americ