Defending the Innocent, Around the World, Together.

Founded as the natural progression of a noble cause first envisioned in 2002 by human rights attorney Kurt Kerns in Wichita, Kansas, the International Innocence Initiative is a not-for-profit that works to prevent wrongful convictions, free the innocent, and create fair, compassionate, and equitable systems of justice for everyone, especially underprivileged persons or those without means, facing an adverse criminal justice system foreign to them in every way.  
About Us

Every Donation 

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Our vision is a world where every person's right to a fair trial is respected, whatever their nationality, wherever they are accused.  Included in that vision is the ability for persons suffering financial hardship to have access to qualified counsel, at no cost or reduced cost.

Who we help

We help ordinary people like you, and their loved ones, that are faced with injustice.  The people we help are parents, siblings, spouses, children, family, neighbors, and friends.  Some of them are students, tourists or vacationers, hard-working business travelers, and/or refugees.  The only thing that they have in common is that they need help with a foreign legal system, with no one to turn to.  We help anyone who is faced with accusations and legal criminal proceedings in a jurisdiction other than their home state or country.

How you can help

If you would like to help the Initiative and join in our mission to provide help to persons in need, there are several ways to help.  It is up to you which method or combination of methods you choose.  People can donate funds for our cause, or they can donate their time and/or services.  Donations can take the form of one-time, recurring, memorial, or a portion of purchases at Amazon Smiles.  Volunteers can volunteer to help with Fundraising, Business Operations, and/or work on legal cases of our clients.

Our reach

We work to prevent wrongful convictions, free the innocent, and create fair, compassionate, and equitable systems of justice for everyone - wherever they find themselves accused on the planet.  Our not-for-profit was formed by lawyers with significant international experience.   Every year we aim to assist multiple persons and families to navigate a foreign legal system by offering practical advice, information, guidance on foreign laws, contacts of local lawyers and legal representation globally as needed.

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

~Martin Luther King, Jr

People that need your support.*

* Disclaimer: Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

A Construction Engineer (54 y/o) Newly Engaged




A woman's naturalized US citizen Fiancee was visiting family in the UK to collect his inheritance from the death of his father (precious metals and currency). Returning home with his inheritance in his luggage, he is detained at Madrid Airport when attempting to check-in for a connecting flight to the US. He is locked-up in Airport Detention and accused of smuggling and trafficking undeclared goods of value, in violation of import/exports customs regulations of the UK/EU/Spain.

An African War Refugee (33 y/o) Single Mother




A survivor of the conflict in her war-torn African homeland, she was granted asylum status. After 8 years, now she is threatened with the prospect of having her asylum status revoked and being deported, over a charge of assaulting a police officer. She had attempted to protect her boyfriend when armed police forcibly entered their home attempting to arrest her boyfriend on an invalid warrant. It is alleged she committed a misdemeanor crime by "touching" one of the officers holding her boyfriend at gunpoint.

A Travelling Salesman (43 y/o) Father of Three




Father of Three, accused of harassment by another passenger on an airplane while waiting at Brussels Airport during a delay on a connecting air flight returning back to the US from a work trip to Latvia. He is removed from the plane and brought before a judge. He is being prosecuted and pressured to plead guilty or keep coming back for Court hearings every month until trial.

Every gift has a HUGE impact.


A portion of each donation helps pay for the time our team spends preparing for each case.  Typically our cases require both a local attorney in the place of arrest and an attorney from the Initiative.


Donations help pay for food, gas, and lodging for our legal team as they work to help others. Translations, transcripts, and other legal expenses are also paid for by donations


Your gift helps to offset any additional court fees or Expert Witness fees associated with the cases that we take on.


Our team often travels large distances to meet our clients, who may be all over the world. Donations help offset travel costs.

Now is the time to give.

Much of our work is time sensitive. Every gift is immediately put into action in the fight against injustice.
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+1 (312) 204-7252

+1 (800) 486-2950 [Toll Free]

161 N. Clark St., Suite 1700
Chicago, Illinois, 60601
United States of America
Headquarters in Chicago
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