U.S. Consulate brings Child Abuse Expert to Bermuda

Professor Susan Kreston, an international expert on crimes against children, will visit Bermuda from May 3 – 5 on a speaker program under sponsorship of the U.S. Consulate.  While here, Prof. Kreston will meet with NGOs and government entities to discuss a range of topics related to child abuse.  Prof. Kreston will have round table discussions with professionals and experts at The Family Centre, SCARS, and the Department of Child and Family Services who work with children and families affected by crimes against children.  In addition, she will conduct a workshop for individuals or charitable organizations seeking training on recognizing and reporting child abuse; this workshop is offered under the sponsorship of the Interagency Committee for Children and Family and SCARS

U.S. Consul General Mary Ellen Koenig noted, “Professor Kreston is an experienced and knowledgeable authority on child abuse issues.  I worked with Susan previously in South Africa and Russia where the U.S. Embassies sponsored similar programs.  I have great respect for her international expertise and straightforward approach to difficult issues that are sadly faced by communities in every part of the world.  Our hope in offering this speaker program in Bermuda is to create various forums for discussion on a topic that is a high priority for governments and NGOs everywhere: protecting the most vulnerable of our citizens.”

Prof. Kreston is currently a Research Fellow in Law and former Fulbright Professor of Psychology & Law at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa. She researches, guest lectures and publishes on criminal justice matters, with a focus on human trafficking and crimes against children. She is also a consultant on legal and human rights matters, with a focus on crimes against women and children.

Prof. Kreston has worked as a legal consultant to various United Nations agencies (UNODC, UNICEF, UNIFEM) as well working in Africa (South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, Liberia, Rwanda and Kenya), Asia (Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan), Europe (Sweden, Russia, England) and the Dominican Republic on human trafficking, child abuse and related matters.

From 1997 through 2002 Prof. Kreston was with the U.S. National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse where, as Deputy Director, she headed the Child Abduction and Sexual Exploitation Unit. Her work there focused on trafficked and abducted children, as well as forensic and medical evidence in child abuse prosecutions, physical abuse, and internet crimes against children.

Prof. Kreston began her career as an Assistant District Attorney in the Appellate Division with the New Orleans District Attorney’s Office. Later, as a sex crimes prosecutor, she was responsible for all phases of criminal prosecution of child sexual and physical abuse, as well as adult sexual assault. In England, Prof. Kreston was seconded to the Crown Prosecution Service and taught human rights law at the University of Sussex.