A Filipino immigrant in Australia was forced to work round the clock for her employers who controlled her life and restricted her from seeing other people and going to places, and trapped her in a life of slavery.
Court records revealed that the Filipina whose identity was kept confidential, was threatened against leaving, told she couldn’t socialize with others and, when she eventually fled the home, the couple hired a private detective to track her down and bring her back.
Filipina Endures Slavery in the Hands of Employers in Australia – Employer Offer $70,000 Compensation
With the hopes of having a better life for her family, the victim went to Australia under a tourist visa and was recruited by the Sydney couple to work in Australia in 2013 as a cleaner and nanny of their children, News.com.au reported.
The couple, Shiela and Joshua McAleer, paid for the Filipina’s travel expenses. But after her tourist visa expired, they confiscated her passport and told her that she will not go home even if her family member went sick.
In a sentencing hearing this week in Sydney, the court heard that the woman felt as though she had no option but to go along with the couples’ plans for her to work around the clock for three years.
“I did not know when I came that I would have to work 24 hours a day. I did not get paid for my work,” the victim recalled.
The couple pleaded guilty to charges such as conducting business involving forced labor, harboring an unlawful non-citizen and making a false statement for health benefits.
The couple will be sentenced in June and could face a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
They already offered to pay $70,000 as compensation to their victim.
Here are video news report about the said news:
READ NEXT: Cost of Living of a Typical OFW in Australia
For our fellow OFWs in Australia, if you need help from our government, please seek assistance in our nearest embassy or consulate- Philippine Embassy in Canberra, Australia, Philippine Consulate General in Sydney, Australia