Cases & Deals

Human trafficking victim prevails on claims under TVPA

Client(s) Sarah Roe (a pseudonym)

On July 31, 2017, a jury in the Eastern District of Virginia found in favor of Jones Day pro bono client Sarah Roe (a pseudonym) and awarded her $3 million dollars in compensatory and punitive damages on her claims under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act ("TVPA"). The jury found that Linda Howard, a former U.S. State Department employee, had violated the TVPA's prohibitions on forced labor, forced labor trafficking, and commercial sex trafficking and that she had conspired to commit these offenses, all while she and her husband, Russell Howard, were posted at the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a, Yemen. Sarah, a young Ethiopian woman, had alleged that, during the six-month period in 2007 when she worked in the Howards' home as a live-in housekeeper, she was repeatedly abused --- sexually, psychologically, and physically -- and told that this was part of her job.

The Washington based Jones Day team advising Ms. Roe was led by Ms. Patterson, and included Andres Salinas (both associates). The matter was supervised by Jones Day partners Carter DeLorme, Ms. Marshall, and Chris Vergonis.