United Nations: Legal Officer (Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice – Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling)

United Nations: Legal Officer (Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice – Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling), P4

Job Opening

Posting Title: Legal Officer (Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice – Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling), P4
Department/Office: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
Duty Station: VIENNA
Posting Period: 21 June 2021 – 04 August 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Drug Control and Crime Prevent-UNODC-155251-R-Vienna (G)
Staffing Exercise N/A

United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

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Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section (HTMSS), Organized Crime and Illicit Trafficking Branch (OCB), Division for Treaty Affairs (DTA), United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in Vienna, Austria. The incumbent will work under the direct guidance and supervision of the Team Leader, Normative and Policy Team, and the overall supervision of the Chief of Section.

For more information on UNODC, please visit our website: www.unodc.org


Within assigned authority, the incumbent will be responsible for the following specific tasks:

  • Promote adherence to and implementation of the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children (Human Trafficking Protocol) and the Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air (Migrant Smuggling Protocol), both supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC);
  • Perform duties related to the Branch’s functions as secretariat to the Conference of the Parties to UNTOC and its Working Groups on Trafficking in Persons and on Mi-grant Smuggling; substantively support the newly established Implementation Review Mechanism in relation to the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Protocols;
  • Provide expert technical advice and extensive legal research and analysis on issues pertaining to criminal law, international law and human rights relating, in particular, to criminal justice responses to human trafficking and migrant smuggling and inde-pendently handle a wide range of complex and often sensitive legal matters;
  • Coordinate and draft legal studies, reports, and briefs on specific legal and technical issues; coordinate, guide and direct the work of junior officers, consultants/ individual contractors and interns dealing with the above issues within the Team as required; ad-vise and interact with governments on the above issues;
  • Plan, organize, and deliver a variety of specialized legal and technical services for governments and practitioners on the implementation of the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Protocols and their links to related international legal instruments including on slavery, contemporary forms for slavery, forced labour and human rights; advise on migration governance and the implementation of the Global Migration Compact and Refugee Compact;
  • Coordinate the preparation of and draft reports to the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND), the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ), Econom-ic and Social Council (ECOSOC), General Assembly (GA); participate and contribute to the substantive servicing of the meetings of those bodies, as required;
  • Represent UNODC at the United Nations Network on Migration including preparing for, attending, and representing the Office at working-level meetings; drafting inputs for consultative processes; maintaining regular communication with UN Network on Migration focal-points in other UN agencies; liaising with the Network Secretariat / Coordinator; supporting principal-level engagement in the UN Network on Migration, as required;
  • Participate in and contribute to other inter-agency cooperation efforts against trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants within the UN, such as the Interagency Coordination Group against Trafficking in Persons (ICAT), coordinated by UNODC, the Global Humanitarian Cluster and Alliance 8.7;
  • Contribute to mobilizing policy and funding support for the programme of work, including extra-budgetary voluntary contributions and building support for cost-sharing contributions from governments and identifying other funding sources for UNODC projects and activities; participate in relevant donors’ meetings, fund-raising missions as well as other fund-raising activities, as required;
  • Perform other work-related duties as required.


  • Professionalism: Has knowledge of international legal procedures and instruments especially of UNTOC and the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling protocols. Has knowledge of theories, concepts and approaches relating to crime prevention and criminal justice, in particular human trafficking and migrant smuggling, organized crime, and their links to peace, development and security. Is able to efficiently advocate for victim assistance, human rights protection, gender equality and their links to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Has thorough knowledge of the mandates of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime on trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants and relevant United Nations norms and standards. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work;
  • Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed;
  • Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in law (preferably in public international or criminal law), international relations, political science, or closely related fields is required. A first-level university degree in law in combination with two years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible professional work experience in crime prevention and criminal justice, including three years at the international level, in countering human trafficking and/or migrant smuggling and transnational organized crime is required.

Proven experience in international cooperation in criminal matters as well as mainstreaming gender and human rights in programme work is desirable.

Experience in providing policy advice and legislative advice, including legal drafting support is desirable.

Experience in servicing intergovernmental meetings is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the UN Secretariat. For this position, fluency in English with excellent drafting skills is required. Knowledge of other UN official languages is an advantage.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise and a competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This is a regular budget post. Filling of this position is subject to funding availability and the initial appointment will be for a period of one year. Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of funds.

For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 31 December 2020, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, China, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Suriname, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her.

Vienna is classified in the H category and is a family duty station.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


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