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Marcel Van Der Watt

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Marcel Van Der Watt

Lecturer & Human Trafficking Investigator


Currently resides in: Gauteng, South Africa

Born 27-06-1979 in Port Elizabeth South Africa

Marcel is a lecturer and researcher at the Department of Police Practice (University of South Africa) responsible for postgraduate supervision and tuition in criminal and forensic investigation science. He is an experienced hostage negotiator and criminal investigator specialising in organised crime, human trafficking and sexual offences. He received numerous awards, commendations and international recognition for his contribution to counter-human trafficking investigations and activities and was listed as one of the 'Top 35 under 35 Africans' for 2014 by YPIA. Marcel is passionate about issues relating to social justice and counter-human trafficking and enjoys engaging with communities. He is involved in a number of grassroots initiatives which contributes to the multidisciplinary response to human trafficking in South Africa. These include the Gauteng Rapid Response Task Team for Human Trafficking, the National Freedom Network (NFN) and Unisa's own Project Tshireletso. Marcel is a PhD candidate and SANPAD graduate (South Africa-Netherlands Research Programme on Alternatives in Development). He is a monthly columnist for Gateway News in which his ambassadorship to the Gospel (2 Corinthians 5:20) serves as the cornerstone for his writings.

Contact details

vdwatm1@unisa.ac.za

caseinfo.nfn@gmail.com

M: +27836864432


Web presence

Business Address

337 Veale Street, Pretoria, South Africa, 0181


Professional Portfolios

View all portfolios→


Crime and complexity â and your input!

in Gateway News

Lessons from Humpty Dumpty

in Gateway News

Professional details

Current Position(s)

Lecturer, Counter-Human Trafficking and Social Justice Influencer, Investigator | Police Practice, College of Law | UNISA - University of South Africa
Pretoria, South Africa | February 2011 - present

Academia, Education and Training

Tuition of undergraduate modules in Criminal and Forensic Investigation; Postgraduate supervision; Community engagement and Social Justice specific to the area of Human Trafficking and crimes against women and children


Previous Position(s)

Criminal Investigator (Hawks) | Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) | South African Police Service (SAPS)
Port Elizabeth, South Africa | December 2008 - January 2011

Government, Public Administration and Defence

Project driven investigations into Human Trafficking and Organised Crime


Hostage Negotiator | Hostage Negotiation Team | South African Police Service (SAPS)
Port Elizabeth, South Africa | February 2007 - January 2011

Government, Public Administration and Defence

Crisis negotiations during hostage and suicide incidents (ad hoc to criminal investigation duties)


Criminal Investigator (FCS) | Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit | South African Police Service (SAPS)
Port Elizabeth, South Africa | December 2005 - December 2008

Government, Public Administration and Defence

Investigation of crimes against women and children i.e. Rape, Sexual Assault, Child Pornography, Kidnapping & Abduction


Police Officer | Emergency Services | South African Police Service (SAPS)
Port Elizabeth, South Africa | October 2001 - December 2005

Government, Public Administration and Defence

6 months SAPS training, Radio Control, Flying Squad (Rapid Response) and Collision Unit (Photography and Plandrawing at scenes of culpable homicide)


Military | Army Gymnasium | South African Department of Defence
Heidelberg, South Africa | January 1998 - December 1998

Government, Public Administration and Defence

Junior Leadership Course, Basic Training, Anti-Aircraft Battalion

Educational history

Secondary

Framesby High School, Port Elizabeth, South Africa (1997)

Tertiary

University of South Africa

Pretoria, South Africa | January 2014 - present

Doctoral Degree - Police Science

The doctoral research (in progress) explores the multilayered complexities inherent to the investigation of human trafficking for sexual exploitation. A theoretical lens will be used in an attempt to understand the often chaotic circumstances associated with this type of criminal investigation.

University of South Africa

Pretoria, South Africa | 2006 - 2011

Magister Technologiae - Forensic Investigations

University of South Africa

Pretoria, South Africa | 2006 - 2006

Baccalareus Technologiae - Policing (cum laude)

University of South Africa

Pretoria, South Africa | 2002 - 2006

National Diploma - Policing (cum laude)

Damelin

Port Elizabeth, South Africa | 2001 - 2001

Higher Certificate - Business Management

Achievements

Awards

Top 35 under 35 Africans | 2014

In early 2014, YPIA put out a worldwide call for nominations to find Africans under 35 years of age making an impact “in their respective countries, on the continent and in the wider world.” To qualify, they needed to have met the following conditions: 1) Under the age of 35 at the time of call for applications; 2.) A citizen of an African country; 3.) Excelling in their respective field and area of expertise; 4.) Making a substantial impact on critical African issues and international affairs; 5.) Recognized among colleagues and the broader community as a leader/future leader and 6.) Values ethics and human rights

Outstanding Service and Monetary Award (counter-human trafficking activities). | 2011

Commendation and Monetary Award by the National Commissioner of the South African Police Service, General B.H. Cele on 2011-06-15: For outstanding services rendered in that he, through his commitment and dedication, arrested six suspects for human trafficking, sexual exploitation of a child and money laundering and recovered drugs and stolen property.

Unreserved Endorsement (counter-human trafficking activities) | 2010

Commendation by E. Benjamin Skinner fellow and author at the Harvard Kennedy School CARR CENTER for Human Rights Policy (Massachusetts, USA) on 2010-05-19: An offer of unreserved endorsement for the work of Sgt. Marcel van der Watt and his professionalism and dedication to serve even the least fortunate South Africans.

Exceptional Service and Star of the Year 2008 for Motherwell Cluster | 2009

Commendation by Director K.C Meyer and Assistant Commissioner J.J Kapp on 2009-07-10: Certificate of Exceptional Service: Commendation for outstanding services rendered in that he was acknowledged as the Star of the Year for Motherwell Cluster in 2008 (counter-human trafficking activities).

Outstanding Service (counter-human trafficking activities) | 2009

Commendation by Provincial Commissioner M.S Landu on 2009-07-03: For outstanding services rendered in that he was nominated as a finalist in the category: Police Star of the Year 2008.

Commendation (Hostage Negotiation) | 2009

Commendation by Deputy Provincial Commissioner PM-A.M. McKenzie: Work of excellence- Operational Hostage Negotiators: Member was part of the team commended for defusing a highly volatile hostage situation in Motherwell, Port Elizabeth on 2009-02-16.

ADT/Algoa Sun Heroes Campaign Award | 2008

ADT/Algoa Sun Heroes Campaign 2008 Award on 2008-11-17: The recipient has significantly contributed to the fight against crime in the city of Port Elizabeth (counter-human trafficking activities).

Rotary International Vocational Service Award | 2008

Rotary International Vocational Service Award on 2008-11-04: In recognition of outstanding service to the local community by persons who dedicate their time and resources to helping others. The recipient has demonstrated great determination to serve the community (counter-human trafficking activities).

Outstanding Service (counter-human trafficking activities) | 2008

Commendation by Assistant Commissioner J.J Kapp on 2008-09-08: Outstanding and valuable contribution towards investigation of crime and the resulting successes achieved in terms of Human Trafficking.

Shortlist and nomination

Nominated as a finalist in the category: Police Star of the Year 2008 | 2009

media exposure

Talk Radio 702 interview | 2015

Interviewed by John Robbie on the issue of missing children and human trafficking, Pretoria, 2 December 2015 @ 06:45.

Against All Odds with Mpho Lakaje (eNCA) television interview | 2015

Interviewed by Lerato Motsiri for a contribution on the issue of Human Trafficking and the story of Elanie Kruger, survivor of Human Trafficking-TX unknown, Hyde Park, 18 September 2015 @ 13:00.

RSG Spektrum radio interview | 2015

Interviewed by Jean Esterhuizen on the issue of human trafficking, the new legislation and visa regulations by the Department of Home Affairs, Pretoria, 14 September 2015 @ 13:20.

Rights & Recourse (SABC 404) live television interview | 2015

Formed part of a panel interviewed by Siphiwo Nzawumbi on the issue of human trafficking. The panel consisted of Mr Bryan Nix-Beautiful Dream Society- and Me Veronica Gantana-Department of Social Development, Pretoria, 30 August 2015 @ 14:00.

SABC News television interview | 2015

Interviewed by Collen Lemawane on the issue of the new Visa regulations and its impact on tourism in South Africa -Tx 7 August 2015: Collen Lemawane speaks to a family affected by Visa laws, Pretoria, 6 August 2015 @ 13:00.

Insight for Living (Loveworldsat) live television interview | 2015

Interviewed together with Amanda van der Westhuizen by Zandile Makula on the issue of human trafficking in South Africa, Randburg, 2 August 2015 @ 17:00.

Cape Talk radio interview | 2015

Interviewed by Pippa Hudson regarding the nature and extent of child trafficking in South Africa and the new Home Affairs Visa regulations, Pretoria, 1 June 2015 @ 13:10.

eNCA live television interview | 2015

Interviewed by Uveka Rangappa for comment on reports regarding escalating risks of human trafficking after the earthquake disaster in Nepal, Durban (via Skype), 8 May 2015 @ 06:40.

Baas Speurder (ASTV) television | 2015

Interviewed by Andries du Plooy on the criminal investigation of human trafficking, Pretoria, 21 April 2015 @ 12:00. TX unknown.

UNISA Radio | 2015

Interviewed by Unisa Radio on the issue of human trafficking, Pretoria, 1 April 2015 @ 13:15.

Law Focus (WITS Radio) | 2015

Interviewed by Xoli Matamela on the criminal investigation and response to human trafficking cases, Pretoria, 24 February 2015 @ 18:40.

RSG radio documentary | 2015

Interviewed by Christelle van Tonder on the criminal investigation and response to human trafficking cases titled: As n mens gesteel word, Pretoria, 18 February 2015 @ 11:00. Broadcasted 2015-03-05 @ 20:00.

Talk Radio 702 | 2014

Interviewed by Redi Tlhabi on the principles of hostage negotiation with reflection on the 15 December 2014 Sydney Hostage Siege in Australia. Pretoria, 16 December 2014 @ 10:30.

Table Talk with Patience (Tshwane TV) television interview | 2014

Interviewed together with Kirsten Hornby (National Freedom Network) by Patience Mlengana on the issue of human trafficking in South Africa. Sunninghill, 14 October 2014 @ 11:00.

Heartbeat (MNET) television interview | 2014

Interviewed together with Diane Wilkinson (National Freedom Network) by Charles van Onselen and Bonolo Nkosi on the issue of human trafficking and the work of the National Freedom Network. Randburg, 17 July 2014 @ 10:30.

UNISA Radio interview | 2014

Interviewed together with Mr Andy Desmond UK by Unisa Radio on the issue of human trafficking, the role of Juju and the Project Tshireletso seminar on 28 May 2014. Pretoria, 27 May 2014 @ 14:10.

Rights & Recourse (SABC 404) live television interview | 2014

Formed part of a panel interviewed by Dumile Mateza. The panel consisted of Mr Luvuyo Mfaku (NPA), Prof Beatri Kruger (University of the Free State) and Ms Thora Mansfield (Open Door Crisis Centre). SABC, Auckland Park, 1 June 2014 @ 14:00.

GODFIRST documentary on Exploitation | 2014

Interviewed by Ryan Sobey for a six episode documentary on human trafficking and exploitation in Pretoria, 29 March 2014 @ 08:00.

Radio Kansel radio interview | 2014

Interviewed by Charles van Onselen on the issue of human trafficking and the recent Boko Haram abductions in Nigeria. Pretoria, 16 May 2014 @ 16:45.

Heartbeat (MNET) television interview | 2013

Interviewed by Charles van Onselen and Bonolo Nkosi on the issue of human trafficking. Randburg, 7 November 2013 @ 10:30.

SAFM pre-recorded radio interview | 2013

Interviewed by Monique Stander on 1 November 2013 at The Silence Beyond the River photo exhibition on the issue of human trafficking.

Kofifi Fm The Father Hour radio talk show | 2013

Interviewed by Shannon Webb on the signs of human trafficking in our communities and the role of fathers and men. Pretoria, 13 October 2013 @ 11:30.

RSG Praat Saam radio talk show | 2013

Interviewed by Lynette Francis on the issue of Human Trafficking and the new legislation. Auckland Park, 8 October 2013 @ 08:00.

RSG Monitor radio interview | 2013

Interviewed by Jean Esterhuizen on the issue of human trafficking and the new legislation. Pretoria, 7 October 2013 @ 15:00.

Fokus (SABC 2) television interview | 2013

Interviewed by Lynette Francis on the issue of human trafficking and the impact of the new legislation. Freedom Park, Pretoria, 6 October 2013 @ 18:30.

Radio Kansel radio interview | 2013

Interviewed by Charles van Onselen on the issue of human trafficking. Pretoria, 3 October 2013 @ 09:00.

Dagbreek (Kyknet) television interview | 2013

Interviewed by Pierre Breytenbach on the issue of human trafficking. Randburg, 3 October 2013 @ 07:10.

Conversation with Salman Khan (ITV-DSTV) television interview | 2013

Interviewed by Salman Khan on the issue of human trafficking in Africa. Rivonia, 6 February 2013 @ 10:00.

Soul Therapy (Soweto TV) television interview | 2012

Interviewed by Billy-Guy Bhembe on the issue of human trafficking in South Africa. Soweto, 25 October 2012 @ 10:30.

Collaborative production by Triple M Productions, Dischem and Rapport. | 2012

Interviewed for a short awareness film on human trafficking called Mensehandel on 6 October 2012.

Radio Namakwaland radio talk show with Riekert Botha | 2012

Interviewed by Riekert Botha on an article I authored and published by Gateway News titled Complete And Fully Equipped To Fight The Good Fight. Pretoria, 1 October 2012 @ 09:15.

SAFM pre-recorded radio interview | 2012

Interviewed on the Lexis Nexis compendium for human trafficking. SABC on 3 August 2012 @ 17:00.

RSG Praat Saam radio talk show | 2012

Interviewed by Lynette Francis on the issue of Human Trafficking in South Africa. Pretoria, 21 March 2012 @ 08:00.

Robinson Regstreeks (Kyknet) television interview | 2012

Interviewed by Freek Robinson on the issue of Human Trafficking in South Africa.18 March 2012 @ 19:30.

Chai FM radio talk show | 2012

Interviewed by Greg Hurvitz on the issue of child trafficking, Pretoria, 6 February 2012 @ 08:10.

Fokus (SABC 2) television interview | 2011

Interviewed by Lynette Francis on Die regstelsel: Laat dit ons kinders in die steek?, 4 December 2011 @ 18:30.

SAFM radio talk show | 2011

Part of a panel interviewed by Ashraf Garda as part of the A Tangled Web report on Human Trafficking by Media Monitoring Africa. SABC, Auckland Park, 21 November 2011 from 14:00 to 15:45.

Radio 2000 radio talk show | 2011

Interviewed by Tabiso Tema on the issue of Human Trafficking as part of the National Prosecuting Authority Awareness Week. Pretoria, 5 October 2011 @ 20:30.

Morning Live (SABC) television interview | 2011

Interviewed by Leanne Mannas on The REDLIGHT documentary and the issue of human trafficking in South Africa. SABC, Auckland Park, 3 August 2011 @ 07:45.

RSG Praat Saam radio talk show | 2011

Interviewed by Lynette Francis on “Kinders as slagoffers en oortreders”, Pretoria, 16 May 2011 @ 08:00.

UK documentary on Human Trafficking | 2010

Interview with Li-Da Kruger for documentary on Human Trafficking (UK), July 2010, Port Elizabeth.

US television production on Human Trafficking | 2010

Interview with journalist Melanie Hamman for a television production on Human Trafficking (USA), 7 June 2010, Walmer, Port Elizabeth.

Kingfisher FM radio talk show | 2010

Interviewed on the issue of Human Trafficking and the upcoming SASCOL conference in Port Elizabeth during which I will conduct a workshop on Human Trafficking.

Carte Blanche (MNET) Television interview | 2009

Interviewed by Devi Govender and provided input on the nature and extent of Human Trafficking in Bloemfontein.

Tru FM radio talk show | 2009

Invited by SABC Education in partnership with Tru fm as part of a panel of experts to discuss the issue of “Child trafficking and its implications during the 2010 World Cup Soccer” during a radio talk show.

Academic Achievements

Academic Journal Article | 2014

Van Graan, J. & Van der Watt, M. 2014. Case docket analysis: An effective crime information product for criminal investigators, crime analysts and crime researchers. Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology, 27(1):144-159. ISSN 1012-8O93.

Academic Qualification Improvement Programme (AQIP) Scholarship | 2014

The programme is a competitive research scholarship which aims to assist UNISA permanent academic staff to pursue senior qualifications (masters and doctoral degrees) on a full-time basis. This competitive programme complements both DHET and UNISA goals and objectives on human capital development towards the attainment of doctoral qualifications.

Social Justice Magazine Article | 2014

Van der Watt, M. 2014. Towards a complex-systems understanding for combating human trafficking. Cancer InCytes Magazine: Cancer Research and Social Justice (Culture, Policy and Law Enforcement), Summer, Volume 3: Issue 1.

Academic Journal Article | 2014

Van der Watt, M., Van Graan, J. & Labuschagne, G. 2014. Modus operandi, signature and fantasy as distinctive behaviour: Fundamental considerations in the case linkage of child rape cases. Child Abuse Research: A South African Journal, 15(1):61-72. ISSN 1562-1383.

Academic Journal Article | 2013

Van der Watt, M & Van Graan, J. 2013. Towards the demystification of gang rape: An investigative analysis of a sample of closed and unsolved gang rape cases in Port Elizabeth. Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology, 26(1):106-121. ISSN 1012-8O93.

Academic Journal Article | 2012

Van der Watt, M. & Ovens, M. 2012. Contextualizing the practice of Ukuthwala within South Africa. Child Abuse Research: A South African Journal, 13(1):11-26. ISSN 1562-1383.

South Africa-Netherlands Research Programme on Alternatives in Development (SANPAD) Scholarship | 2012

SANPAD scholarship received on 6 June 2012 for training in Social Science Research Methodologies towards completion of doctoral studies. Programme completed with an overall excellent rating for the research proposal and live defence (Value R 120 000.00).

SAPS Best Student Award | 2009

Best Student Award for Psychologically Motivated Crimes Course, Pretoria, 2009-08-16 to 2009-09-04

SAPS Best Student Award | 2007

Best Student Award for Detective Learner Programme, Port Elizabeth, 2007-08-20 to 2007-11-30

SAPS Best Student Award | 2006

Best Student Award for Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Investigators course, Pretoria, 2006-11-06 to 2006-11-24

Cum Laude (B-Tech: Policing) | 2006

Cum Laude (National Diploma: Policing) | 2006

Activities

community

Together Let's Stop Traffick

Working group volunteer, November 2013 - present

Contributor to the working group going forward to create the structure and governance of the international human trafficking information and resource centre.

UNISA'S Project Tshireletso

Project Leader, February 2013 - present

Capturing of grassroots information which suggests the occurrence of human trafficking and sexual exploitation in communities. Information is analysed and disseminated to relevant response agencies.

Gateway News

Columnist, September 2012 - present

Responsible for the column 'Light in the Darkness: Reflections on Crime and Justice'

National Freedom Network (NFN)

Case Manager, November 2011 - present

National network of multidisciplinary volunteers who work towards the response and eradication of human trafficking.

Gauteng Rapid Response Task Team on Human Trafficking

Member, November 2011 - present

A multidisciplinary group of volunteers which consists of prosecutors, social workers, police officials, investigators and civil society. The primary purpose of the task team is to respond to incidents of human trafficking and to facilitate cross-agency communication.

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