May 26, 2006

Modern-day slavery

Ugh. And these people were Filipinos too.

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin (AP) -- A federal jury found a wealthy suburban couple guilty Friday of harboring an illegal immigrant and forcing her to work as their maid for 19 years.

The Filipino national testified during the eight-day trial that she felt like a prisoner in Jefferson and Elnora Calimlim's home.


Jefferson N. Calimlim's attorney, Tom Brown, told jurors the couple had plenty of money to hire an American worker. He said Elnora Calimlim wanted a Filipino maid because she had one while growing up in the Philippines, and she wanted only to help a fellow Filipino.

Elnora Calimlim testified Martinez earned $150 a month for the first 10 years and $400 a month thereafter. Most of the money went to Martinez's parents, who French said received about $18,000 over the 19 years.

Martinez would have earned about $480,000 over that period had the Calimlims paid her a U.S. minimum wage for her 16-hour days, a U.S. Department of Labor witness testified.
Some "help" you gave her, there. Embarassing.

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