ATLANTA (May 11) -- Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) have once again partnered to create the second edition of the comprehensive training manual for international child abduction cases under the Hague Convention. The manual is designed to help attorneys navigate the legal system to effectively return a child to his or her home country or to provide the left-behind parent with access to the child.

Kilpatrick Townsend’s Lee Mann and Chad Theriot were instrumental in creating the first manual with support from NCMEC. Kilpatrick Townsend’s Julie Lierly and Ellen McCarley spearheaded the creation of the new edition.

The firm received a National Law Journal award for the first edition of the manual, which was released in 2007. In light of the overwhelming response to the first edition of the manual from attorneys involved in international child abduction cases, Kilpatrick Townsend and NCMEC partnered to update the manual.

NCMEC handles an average of 2,000 international family abduction cases each year. Although NCMEC no longer handles incoming Central Authority functions under the Hague Convention (those duties were transitioned back to the U.S. Department of State in 2008), it continues to provide technical assistance and resources to parents, law enforcement, and professionals involved in international child abduction matters. Kilpatrick Townsend has provided representation in 35 of these cases resulting in the return of 41 children to Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Germany, Mexico and Panama and the settlement of other access cases. In all, the firm has contributed 8,513 pro bono hours at a value of over $2.5 million to this project since 2001.

To view the manual, please go to:

About the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established in 1984. Designated by Congress to serve as the nation’s clearinghouse, the organization has operated the toll-free 24-hour national missing children’s hotline which has handled more than 3,472,740 calls. It has assisted law enforcement in the recovery of more than 169,840 children. The organization’s CyberTipline has handled more than 1,409,850 reports of child sexual exploitation and its Child Victim Identification Program has reviewed and analyzed more than 67,823,440 child pornography images and videos. The organization works in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice’s office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. To learn more about NCMEC, call its toll-free, 24-hour hotline at 1-800-THE-LOST or visit its web site at

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Granted federal clemency for 14 pro bono clients by President Obama in 2016-2017.