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article imageUS mansion owner arrested for using Indian woman as slave labor

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By Katerina Nikolas     Mar 4, 2012 in World
Rexford - The owner of a 34-room mansion in Rexord, N.Y., has been arrested for using an illegal female worker from Kerala in India, as forced slave labor. In addition to exploiting the worker, the mansion owner also forced the woman to sleep in a walk-in-closet.
The Indian woman, identified only as V.M., was forced to work in the palatial mansion for the princely sum of just 85 cents an hour. The 30,000 square-foot mansion boasts 24-karat gold gilded ceilings, a glass elevator and marble flooring.
According to Emirates 247 she was denied health benefits, personal time off and sick days. Instead she labored from early morning to late evening looking after the owners children, cooking and cleaning.
Times Union
reported that when 39-year-old Annie George, a widow with five children, hired the Indian woman to work for her, it was agreed she would be paid a weekly salary of $1,000, plus food and lodging. Authorties were alerted to the situation via a telephone tip off to a human trafficking hot line. Agents from the Dept. of Homeland Security were dispatched to Llenroc Mansion in Rexford, where it was discovered V.M. was working illegally, without documentation.
The U.S. Dept. of Labor estimates the worker has been cheated out of $206,000 in wages.
The worker had been forced to endure her conditions for 67 weeks, while sleeping on the floor of a walk-in-closet. Moreover investigators have tape recorded conversations between Annie George and the Indian woman's son in India whom WYNT report George warns him to tell investigators his mother is a family member. If indicted Annie George intends to plead not guilty.
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