By David Jolly
Kabul, Afghanistan – Hamstrung by student loans and dismayed at her meager prospects for repaying them, Kimberley Chongyon Motley left the long hours and low pay of the Milwaukee public defender’s office in 2008 for the long-shot promise of Afghanistan.
“I came here for the money, just like half the people here,” she says in “Motley’s Law,” a documentary about her unusual legal career that was broadcast on Al Jazeera America in February. Before arriving here, “I couldn’t find Afghanistan on the map.”
Ms. Motley, 40, a Marquette University Law School graduate, had never before traveled overseas when she enrolled in a Justice Department program to train Afghan lawyers and flew to one of the world’s more dangerous places.
In almost eight years practicing law here, Ms. Motley has been involved in some of the most important human rights cases of the post-Taliban era. She is perhaps the first independent lawyer to represent a victim of domestic violence in an Afghan court — a woman who had been forced into marriage by her family at the age of 12 and tortured by her husband. And Ms. Motley represented the family of Farkhunda Malikzada, a 27-year-old woman murdered last year after being falsely accused of having burned the Quran.
She has also helped foreigners who have run afoul of Afghan justice and, to pay the bills, she represents the local interests of Western embassies and big foreign companies, including on occasion The New York Times.
“I still make money, that’s a motivating factor. But I love representing those clients, people I would never have heard of if I hadn’t gone,” she said.
In a recent case, Ms. Motley was asked to help a teenage girl who was born in Afghanistan but raised in Vienna with Austrian citizenship. The young woman was tricked by her parents into returning to Afghanistan to marry a relative, Ms. Motley said.
Locked in a house in rural Baghlan Province with no family or friends to aid her, the girl surreptitiously contacted Ms. Motley (she would not reveal how) to ask for help.
Ms. Motley said she sent her “guys,” two groups of local men she trusts — “I know they’ve got my back,” she said — to rescue the girl from a region where the Taliban had recently captured the city of Kunduz. “Everyone up there has a gun, and people are very nervous.”
After two attempts, they sneaked the girl out and ferried her to Kabul. A month later, Ms. Motley accompanied her back to Vienna.
Read more: NY Times
- LMAO: Watch Nancy Pelosi’s Face at the Moment Trump Said, an ‘Imploding Obamacare Disaster’
- REVEALED: Secret Tape of Woman Being Bribed to Accuse Trump of Sexual Harassment
- Off-Duty Officer Pulls Gun & Fires During Altercation with Group of Teens — Should He Be Punished?
- CNN Reporter SHAMES 12yr-Old Girls for Not Wanting to See ‘Penises’ in Their Locker Rooms — Preaches Tolerance for…
- WATCH: Little Brother ‘Rescues’ Big Sister from a Fight
- Arkansas Might Remove the Clinton’s Name from Their Airport — Should They Do It?
- Yassmin Abdel-Magied Claims ‘Islam is The MOST Feminist Religion’
- Dear Idiot NYT Writer: Here are THREE Provable Instances of Americans Protecting Their Liberty with Guns
- WATCH: Female ISIS Captives Remove Their Veils and BURN Them
- Family of NYC Terrorist Speak Out — They are ‘Outraged’ by NY Police
- ALLAH ADIOS! Muslim Migrants FINALLY Get Deported from US Under Trump Admin
- Vegetarians Receive Bad News as Scientists Reveal SHOCKING New Discovery About Plants
- Theresa May Targeted by Islamist Terrorists, Less Than a Week After Criticizing Trump
- LMAO! Amy Schumer’s Stand-Up Special BOMBED so Bad Netflix Had to Change Their Ratings Format
- [email protected]: Frozen 1911 is SHOT — Slow Motion Video Shows EXACTLY What Happens [WATCH]
- Republicans Divided Over Latest Legislation to Repeal and Replace Obamacare
- Harvard Law Professor, Alan Dershowitz: Liberals Searching for ‘Crimes That Don’t Exist’
- GROSS: Michelle Tells Crowd She’s A Sex Symbol — And It Blows Up In Her Face