Benjamin Hargrove’s legal work as a St. Thomas Law student already has taken him from Minneapolis to Thailand to Washington, D.C., and back again.

Hargrove’s hands-on legal training started with an internship in Thailand working for the International Justice Mission where he focused on issues of child sexual abuse. When he returned to Minnesota, he started an externship with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Minnesota, where he was able to meet several attorneys working on a Thai sex-trafficking case.

“Through those relationships, I had many opportunities to assist the prosecutors and agents with general trial prep, victim interviews and various research projects,” Hargrove said. “This gave me another professional opportunity to learn about anti-sex-trafficking issues, but this time from the federal government’s perspective. ”

During his externship, Hargrove also wrote various position briefs, a white paper on U.S.-Thai relations and an 8th Circuit sentencing appeal regarding a child pornography case.

“I was interested in federal government work before the externship, but now I can firmly say it’s my long-term career goal,” he said. “The externship program at St. Thomas has been immensely beneficial to me both personally and professionally.”

Hargrove headed to Washington, D.C., the summer before his 3L year and interned with the FBI in its International Operations Division. His work included managing search warrant requests from foreign governments and conducting legal research on treaties.

He returned to Minnesota for his final year of law school and transferred to the FBI’s Minneapolis field office, where he works on the Counterterrorism Taskforce and continues to support the Office of the General Counsel in D.C. He also works as a law clerk in the Adult Violent Felony Division of the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office.

Following graduation in May, Hargrove will head to Helena, Montana, to clerk for Justice James Rice of the Montana Supreme Court.

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