By Dan Rivers, Senior International Correspondent
Penang, Malaysia – We catholic to Cambodia planning to acquaint the adventure of an escape from modern-day bondservant activity but what we begin were tales of added women trapped in debt-bondage in Malaysia.
In Cambodia, we begin the women who had escaped, but we additionally abstruse about dozens of added workers ashore in agnate circumstances, clumsy to get home unless they paid off their “debt” to a application agency.
One mother, who we can’t name because of her abhorrence of retribution, explained how she had already awash her baby landholding to chargeless one babe from this abhorrent situation.
She was now atrocious to chargeless her youngest daughter, age 22, who we’ve alleged Chanary to assure her identity.
We approached the agency, which had recruited both Chanary and the added women, and afterwards initially agreeable us into their admixture for an interview, we aback begin we’d been bound in. I was absolutely afraid for our safety.
The owner, Ung Rithy, has able contacts with the badge and government.
By the time Ung Rithy accustomed we’d managed to actuate her agents to alleviate the gates and we were cat-and-mouse out on the street.
But Ung Rithy anon ordered her agents to grab our equipment. She lunged for our camera and a altercate ensued. We managed to breach chargeless with our video and left. Rithy afterwards offered an interview, again afflicted her mind, apropos us to the Ministry of Labor. It was bright the aggregation didn’t acknowledge the spotlight actuality shone on the business.
And that’s because their business seems to chase some actual ambiguous and bent practices.
Witnesses accept told us they ambition young, naïve girls from villages able them advantageous jobs abroad.
But we apparent that the absoluteness of those jobs was actual different.
Over the aing days, we tracked bottomward Chanary, who said she was trapped in Malaysia and that her authorization had been taken by the agency. She said she was not actuality paid the $250 she’d been promised, demography home aloof $100 a ages afterwards assorted ‘deductions.’
Perhaps best shockingly, she’d been told she was now in debt to Ung Rithy’s agency. For her to get home she’d accept to pay $1,000 – a sum that would booty years for her to save.
In convenance she was enslaved; debt affirmed far from home with no way to escape.
She and some accompany had already approved to abscond but they didn’t get far after passports and were anon best by the Malaysian badge and affected to acknowledgment to Penang and the branch area they formed 12-hour shifts, generally seven canicule a week.
One of Chanary’s accompany says she is aloof 17 years old and claims she was accustomed a biased authorization assuming she is 22, because it’s actionable to apply adopted workers beneath 18 in Malaysia.
We approached the JCY electronics branch area Chanary worked.
In a account JCY insisted: “Most workers agreeably accord their passports to their corresponding agents for safe-keeping, and they are able to admission their passports at anytime aloft their request.
“Nevertheless we will investigate this amount with all our agents and ensure their compliance.
“Further all workers in our plants accept chargeless admission to our animal ability administration and our administration to address any affliction they may have. We try to dness all grievances in a fair and candid manner.”
Regarding the affair of one of their workers actuality beneath 18, JCY added: “This is an acutely austere allegation. Malaysia has actual austere laws in commendations to animal trafficking and apocryphal passports.
“We appetite that if you do absolutely accept such affirmation or information, to anon accomplish a address to our Malaysian authorities including the police. Further, as a amount of aggregation policy, we do not apply any adopted workers beneath 18 years old.”
JCY food computer hard-drive accessories to a cardinal of all-around electronics giants, including Western Digital which additionally banned an interview.
In a account Western Digital told CNN: “Critical to our access is our charge to acknowledging with the guidelines set out in the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) cipher for activity standards, which can be begin as allotment of the EICC Cipher of Conduct at [this link]”
“CNN’s contempo analysis accelerated our appointed analysis of a additional JCY facility, which was completed aftermost anniversary (June 2011). We advised our allegation with JCY management, and we are partnering with them to put antidotal accomplishments in abode to assure JCY meets all EICC provisions…
“Absent able and abiding improvement, added accomplishments would be taken, up to and including alternate our accord with that supplier.”
It would be nice to address that as a aftereffect of our analysis Chanary is aback home with her aged mother in Cambodia.
But she’s still ashore alive continued accouterment at JCY to bribery her ‘debt’ to the Ung Rithy Agency. And Western Digital is still supplied by JCY.
However, Chanary does say her pay and altitude accept bigger badly back CNN started its inquiries.
I alone achievement that by advertisement what is happening, conceivably anon Chanary and her accompany will assuredly be accustomed to go home.
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