Sunday, December 2, 2012

105 Indonesian, Filipina, Cambodia 'MAIDS' rescued in Locked-rooms Malaysia

The foreign women getting into an Immigration lorry in Port Klang yesterday before they were sent to a halfway house. Pic by Mohamad Naufal Mohamad Idris

HUMAN TRAFFICKING: Women duped by agency and made to work without pay

PORT KLANG: A LICENSED maid agency, which had allegedly locked up 105 foreign women, was raided by the Selangor Immigration Department in Port Klang yesterday.

The women -- 95 Indonesians, six Filipinos and four Cambodians -- were in tears when they were rescued. They recounted tales of horror about how they had been treated by the agency.

The women alleged that they had been physically abused. Some claimed they were forced to eat paper to stave off hunger pangs as they were only provided with food rations.

State Immigration director Amran Ahmad said a surveillance of the agency was initiated following a tip-off.

He said a team, formed to investigate the case, had been monitoring the agency for the past few weeks and decided to move in at 8am on Saturday.

The women, aged between 18 and 25, were found locked up in rooms at the four-storey agency in Bandar Baru Klang.

"Every morning, the women were taken in a van and delivered to various homes in the Klang Valley to do maid services.

"At the end of the day, they would be picked up and locked inside the four-storey premises," he said, adding that investigations showed the women had entered the country on social visit passes after being promised job offers.

Amran said the women had been promised a monthly salary of RM700, but had not been paid a single sen in the past six months.

Whenever the women questioned the agency about pay or living conditions, their food rations were reduced further.

Filipino Manizel Mazano, 22, said they were forced to work without pay to meet the cost of their air fares to Malaysia as well as their food and lodging.

Following the raid, 12 people were arrested, including three local men, believed to be employees of the agency.

The rest were women -- five Indonesians, three Cambodians and a Filipino -- who were supervisors of the women.

Amran said the agency owner was a Malaysian and police were looking for him to help in investigations.

The rescued women were sent to a halfway house and will be deported. (http://is.gd/zyMyK9)

New Straits Times 

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