Looking back at 2008 winner Krishna Patel

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United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut Krishna Patel was named 2008 INDIA New England Woman of the Year for her efforts in prosecuting crimes against children, specifically sex crimes such as Internet pornography, sex with minors and sex trafficking. Two years later she is still hard at work combating the exploitation of children. She remains a U.S. attorney out of Connecticut and she is also now the deputy chief of the National Security and Major Crimes Unit.

“Sadly we still have to keep fighting it,” said Patel. “The good news is I am struck about how much more awareness there is on the topic, which is really terrific.”

Patel has increasingly taken her battle outside of the United States, where offenders often travel because sexual exploitation of children is not as heavily policed.

Patel has been serving as an assistant U.S. attorney for the District of Connecticut since March 2003. She had been designated by the United States Attorney to coordinate efforts to combat human smuggling and human trafficking in the State of Connecticut and served as the chair of the Connecticut Smuggling and Trafficking of Persons Investigative Task Force (STOP IT). She has also served as an ex-officio member of the Connecticut State Legislature working group on human trafficking.

From 2006 until 2010, Patel also served as the coordinator for Project Safe Childhood, a national initiative to combat a variety of crimes involving the exploitation of children. Most recently, in 2010, Patel began serving as the coordinator for the criminal division’s Civil Rights program.

Patel has prosecuted human trafficking cases here in the United States and also prosecuted cases involving American citizens who travel abroad to exploit children. She has provided training to foreign law enforcement in Sierra Leone, Taiwan and others on issues relating to human smuggling/trafficking and child sex offenses.

From 1999 until 2002, Patel worked as an assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York. Prior to joining the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, she was associated with the firm of Winston & Strawn in New York where she worked on a variety of commercial litigation matters. As an associate at Winston & Strawn, she also did pro bono work for the Lawyer’s Committee for Human Rights and the Open Society.

From 1994 until 1996, Patel was admitted to the United States Attorney General’s Honor Program. She has also served as a law clerk to the Honorable Alan H. Nevas of the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut.

Patel is a 1993 graduate of Rutgers University School of Law.

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