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Human trafficking witness in court

Mere Naleba
Tuesday, November 27, 2012

THE trial of four Asians charged with human trafficking continued yesterday at the High Court in Suva with a witness being cross-examined by two defence counsellors.

The four accused, Thailand national Phanat Laojindamanee, Fiji national Zhang Yong, Hong Kong national Lum Bing and Jason Zong, are alleged to have been involved in bringing three Thai women to work as masseuse in Fiji.

It is also alleged the women were expected to offer sexual services to clients.

The court heard the women were taken to a massage parlour in Walu Bay where they were to work.

One of women told the court she had worked as a part time masseuse in Bangkok and knew she was coming to Fiji to work as a masseuse. Mr Lum Bing's lawyer, Akuila Naco, asked the woman if she had her passport with her during her stay. The woman, known as Amy, replied, "Yes, I did".

"And your air ticket as well?" Mr Naco asked.

The woman replied in the affirmative. Mr Naco then asked why she did not return to Thailand if she had her passport and air ticket with her.

The woman told the court through a translator she could not return because she did not have any money.

The trial continues today before Justice Paul Madigan.


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