Family Found Guilty of Modern-Day Slavery
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A Virginia family has been convicted on charges relating to forced labor and domestic servitude.
According to the Department of Justice, a jury found Zahida Aman, Mohammad Nauman Chaudhri, and Mohammad Rehan Chaudhri guilty of conspiracy to commit forced labor.
Additionally, Aman was convicted of forced labor and document servitude, and Rehan Chaudhri was found guilty of forced labor.
“Forced labor, the modern-day equivalent of slavery, has no place in our country or district, and we will stop at nothing to prosecute those that commit these or similar crimes,” said U.S. Attorney Jessica D. Aber for the Eastern District of Virginia.
Aman reportedly arranged a marriage between a third son and the victim in 2002. The victim, a Pakistani woman, moved to the United States and stayed with her husband’s family in Midlothian, Virginia, where the defendants had compelled her “to serve the family as a domestic servant” and subjected her to physical and verbal abuse for over a decade.
The DOJ said that the defendants had restricted communication with her family in Pakistan, took away her money and immigration documentation, and eventually threatened “to separate her from her children by deporting her to Pakistan.”
Additionally, the Justice Department says, “the defendants slapped, kicked, and pushed the victim, even beat her with wooden boards, and on one occasion hog-tied her hands and feet and dragged her down the stairs in front of her children.”
“The defendants exploited the victim’s trust and inflicted cruel and inhumane physical and mental abuse on her, all so they could keep her working in their home as their domestic servant,” Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke said.