Pattaya Daily News

05 October 2007 :: 12:10:07 pm 20789

Tricked by human Traffickers; Three Thai woman forced into sex Trade Abroad

The human traffickers used various methods to lure women, including the promise of a good income job abroad. Many innocent women were naïve and agreed to accept the offers.?
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Following are examples of case studies of three women who were tricked into the sex trade by human traffickers. Their stories have attracted international attention. Human traffickers have severely violated the human rights of women in many regions of the world.

This phenomenon reflects the inequality of rich and poor countries; including the opportunities for education and employment in our country. There are many women and children who took the risk to travel with unscrupulous agencies to work abroad. Then, they were sold by human traffickers, as if they were merchandise, and forced to work at various forms of labor, including sex work.

The stories of these three women only illustrate some of the techniques that human traffickers use to persuade Thai women to accept their offers. Some were willing to travel in the hope of earning a good income. They, eventually, fell into the human traffickers? trap. They ended up being forced into the sex trade, in other countries, against their will.

Their loss of freedom and the distress they had to face forced them to struggle to find a way out.

Mod?s story

Miss Mod (not her real name) was an upcountry girl who dreamt of continuing her studies without being a burden to her family. She was in her fourth year of high school, but her parents no longer had the financial resources for her to continue her studies. She wanted to find employment so she could support herself. Mod was delighted when a friend informed her of an employment opportunity in a restaurant in Bangkok. This would allow her to earn money to further her studies. On the day she was to journey to the restaurant in Bangkok, the owner of the restaurant came to pick her up at her mother?s house. Her mother and sister were suspicious of this job ?opportunity? and tried to prevent her from going. Mod said that if the restaurant job didn?t work out, maybe her brother would be able to find her another job.

 
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Mod was taken, by minibus, to Bangkok. She was taken to a restaurant, but had no idea if this was the restaurant where she would be working. She was given a meal and ordered a yogurt before going to use the bathroom. After she had her yogurt, her memory went blank.

She woke up in a big room full of foreigners. She asked one of the women, who she thought was Thai, ?Where am I??

?Malaysia,? the woman replied. Mod suddenly cried out in the biggest shock of her life, having no idea why she was in Malaysia.

 

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Mod was brought to a big hotel. She was taken for a makeover and her hair was styled to prepare her for work. She immediately realized that she would have to perform some kind of sex work. She was shaking and scared. From 6 PM to 6 AM, she saw many girls, some much younger than she was, including girls from Laos, Burma and Malaysia.
She implored the caretaker not to force her to do that kind of work, but she was hit with a stick. She was unable to fight back or think at that moment. Mod was pushed into a ?prison? with three other girls. She was not given any food for three days. Her only thought was to escape from her prison.

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An older Thai woman, in the locked room, gave Mod a metal bar that resembled a key. Mod used it to force open the door lock. She tried to persuade the other girls in the room to escape with her, but they were afraid of getting caught and, possibly, not being able to see their parents again. Their fears did not stop Mod from trying to escape. She grabbed the iron rod, used for hanging clothes, and jumped down from the fourth floor window. Fortunately, she did not sustain serious injuries, only minor bruises on her leg. She got up quickly, grabbed her clothes and fan for her life.

Finally, Mod was lucky enough to come in contact with an association that helped her to get back home. She would like to warn everybody to be aware of this sort of human trafficking. Mod?s wish is that there would be a scholarship fund for poor students to enroll in school, so they could avoid this sort of tragedy.

She says, “I want to warn everybody who wants to go working Abroad: Don’t go if you don’t know who they are. Make sure you know what kind of job it is before you go.”

DAENG?S STORY

Daeng (not her real name) was married, with two children. Although a close friend had tried to persuade her, many times, to work abroad, she had always refused. However, her innocence eventually resulted in her being deceived and pressed into debt. The ?friend? called her for a chat. In less than a half hour, he handed her a paper to sign. She asked what it was all about. He told her to just sign the paper. He said that it won?t cost her much money and there is no need to pay now. It?s only for 50,000 baht, which she would get back after three months of work. Daeng doesn?t know why she signed it, but she did.

Daeng knew that it was her own fault. She didn?t want to go, but she signed the paper anyway. After a few days, she asked if she could change her mind. The answer was that she was now in debt. How would she pay back the money? The process was already done and she could not change her mind.

Daeng thought she had no choice, as she was unaware of the law. She had nobody to advise her and thought she had to accept being a debtor. The man accompanied her to the embassy to make her passport. Her only wish was that he not sell her. He assured her that she was going to work in a restaurant, as a waitress.
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On the day that she had to leave, she was very nervous. She was a mother of two children. It was her first trip abroad and she could not speak one word of English. When she arrived in the country where she would be working, she was interviewed by the immigration officer in English. She was unable to answer any questions. She looked at the immigration officer and cried. She was very frightened and was shaking. Everywhere she looked was full of foreigners. A woman who greeted her at the airport helped her get through the immigration formalities. She asked the woman where she was. The woman told her she was in Oman. Daeng could only cry. ????
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Three or four days passed before Daeng was taken to her workplace. A woman took her to a fancy restaurant, but told Daeng that she couldn?t work there because she didn?t have an ID card, which was necessary for work.

For the next three or four months, Daeng was required to work in a massage parlor while she waited for her ID card. Otherwise, her debt would continue to increase. A woman, who claimed to be a daughter of one of the agents, said that Daeng?s daily expenses amounted to ten Euros (500 baht). This might not be very much in Oman, but it was a large amount for a Thai girl from the countryside. Daeng had signed the contract for 50,000 baht which went to her mother. The amount was converted to Euros, as they had to pay for the passport and airfare.

Daeng had no choice but to work in the massage parlor, which was actually a front for prostitution. She did not dare refuse as her family and children were threatened with death. Daeng had to swallow her own tears and worked to pay off her debt so she could return and see her children.

Daeng revealed that, for training, the girls were shown sex videos and told to dress up in a sexy style. If she was lucky, she would meet nice, polite customers, but some customers might be cruel or dead drunk.

Daeng often thought about escaping, but was concerned for her family?s safety. Even though she was not locked up, it would be very difficult to get back home. To try to defy a human trafficking gang would be very difficult and dangerous.

The day came when Daeng couldn?t stand it any longer. She asked an English speaking friend to contact the police hotline.

She told her friend, ?I want the police to help us. I am one of three Thai women who were tricked into coming here. We?re in this house and not allowed to go out. They tricked us into selling sex. I want you to help me.?

Daeng continued, ?The police investigators were very helpful. They asked where we were, what was the name of the road and what was the location. The police said they would investigate and would come to help if it was true?The police asked for the telephone number of the man in charge and followed the trail. In the early hour of 7 AM, while we were still asleep, the police raided the place and helped us leave.?

Daeng was lucky to be able to return to Thailand and reunite with her family and two children. She was asked if she would have difficulty readjusting to her small community.

She explained, ?In the beginning, I didn?t dare to face anybody. Even in my hometown, I wasn?t close to anyone. I often traveled to and from Am-nartjaruen, in Burirum Province, to meet with the woman that went to Oman with me. We talked about what we had to face. It still hurts whenever I think about it. I didn?t want my children to know. I was concerned that it would affect their social relationships. I am afraid that someone will tell them. I am afraid that my husband won?t accept it. I am afraid that my husband?s cousins will wonder why I came back empty handed. I am so afraid. I have lived these days for my children. My husband said that even if I returned to Thailand, not rich like the others, he would stay with me. He just wished for me to come back to him and the children. We can start all over again.?

Daeng added, ?My family wished me to have a good job abroad and earn a big income for them. I might have had bad luck in my job and faced a terrible experience; but I am lucky to have a loving family that supports me.?

Daeng doesn?t want others to have such a terrible experience, as she did. It was a horrible experience and not worth any money that she might have made. She was lucky to be able to return, but others might not be as fortunate. They might not ever be able to come back.

SAO?S STORY

Sao is, yet, another girl who was tricked into becoming a victim of human trafficking. She graduated from high school up country. An agent convinced her to work in a restaurant in England. She hesitated for a while, but finally accepted the offer.

The agent was very determined to get Sao to accept the offer. She started coming to see her even before Sao was married and had a child. Sao had known the agent for a long time, but they weren?t close. Sao told her to please wait until her child grew a little bigger, when she wouldn?t have to nurse him anymore. Then the child would be able to drink powdered milk and she would be able to go. The agent was anxious for Sao to accept the offer and was willing to wait. She came to see Sao again in November 2005 and told her that her friend was in urgent need of staff. She told Sao that it would only take two weeks to prepare the documents. Then, Sao could travel to England; and she did.


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All Sao knew was that she would be going to work in a restaurant until she overheard a telephone conversation regarding a new girl and she started to become suspicious.

She realized when she was in the apartment that the work must be of a nefarious nature. She told herself to be patient; that there must be a way out. She didn?t want her handlers to know what she was thinking. She had to swallow her tears, knowing that she was in a dangerous situation. It wouldn?t be safe if she was obvious about it. She had to put up with the predicament so that she would, eventually, be able to reunite with her child.

Finally, Sao, a humble, country girl and a mother of a young child, had to perform sexual services, as she was tricked by an evil human trafficker who waited two or three years to get Sao in her clutches. Sao was not a spoiled girl who wanted easy money from selling sex. She was an innocent who was taken advantage of. She said that they watched her all the time. On the first day, they drove her to the brothel and back. There was a maid, there, who watched her as well.

The next day, Sao took a chance and wrote a note on a piece of paper and gave it to a customer. She stressed to him not to tell the maid.

Tearfully, she said, ?I felt terribly bad. I tried to write on a paper to tell the guest that I needed help.?

Her chance came when the maid asked her to take some used condoms to the waste bin outside. Sao carried the waste bag, with the used condoms, and walked down from the third floor. She put the waste bag in the bin, looked left and right for policemen, who were usually around. However, unfortunately, she didn?t see any. Frightened, she wondered if she could escape. Sao cried and ran and ran as fast as she could. She saw so many foreigners and wouldn?t have known how to get back. She only wanted to get out of that area as quickly as possible.

Sao spotted two women who were sitting around.

Sao said, ?Police!?

The two, kind women took her to the police.

Sao would like people to understand that the girls who perform sexual services come from many different backgrounds. They don?t do it for fun. Everybody wants to have a better life, especially people from E-sarn, who are usually poor. They all want a better standard of living. Sao only had wanted to earn money so her child would have a better future.


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Any trace of Sexual human trafficking, Force of using women and children labor including Force for beggaring, will be very much appreciated.

Please notify to Social security and Social development Office, Chonburi.
Tel: 038 ? 282 586 or Fax: 038 ? 285 208 or
Hotline: 1300

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Society

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