District Attorney George Gascón Expands Foreign Consulate Collaboration to Czech Republic

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 28, 2012

CONTACT: Stephanie Ong Stillman, DA Gascón’s Office, (415) 553-1167
ADA Alex Bastian, DA Gascón’s Office, (415) 553-1931

SAN FRANCISCO- District Attorney George Gascón and Honorary Consul General Richard Pivnicka of the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in San Francisco entered into a formal collaboration today to serve multi-national victims regardless of citizenship status. The memorandum of agreement states that the San Francisco District Attorney's Office will provide victim services and assistance with securing testimony and appearances by multi-national victims.

“Providing vital victim services, regardless of their immigration status, allows witnesses and victims of crimes to hopefully begin the healing process,” said District Attorney George Gascón. “I am grateful for the partnership of the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in our efforts to prosecute crime and ensure justice for all victims.”

We are delighted to be able to enter into this partnership with the DA’s Office, which not only acknowledges and strengthens the relationship between our respective offices, but also our joint commitment to victims of all crimes in San Francisco,” said Honorary Consul General Richard Pivnicka. “Empowering Consulates such as ours to recognize the crimes of human trafficking, domestic violence and hate crimes, will assist us in getting victims to seek justice and access the appropriate services, which will undoubtedly make San Francisco safer.”

The agreement is part of the District Attorney’s effort to reach out to immigrant communities through foreign consulates and to provide trainings regarding hate crimes, human trafficking, domestic violence and other crimes impacting immigrant communities. The District Attorney has already signed agreements with the Consulate General of Mexico in San Francisco and the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco. The District Attorney’s Office has provided over twenty trainings to foreign consulates including China, El Salvador, Guatemala, Peru, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, and Ukraine.

“Working with foreign consulates to ensure the safety of multi-national victims is essential to preserving the sanctity of this city,” said District Attorney George Gascón. “All residents are members of this community and are entitled to victim services regardless of their nationality.”

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