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Fiji Time: 1:53 PM on Tuesday 2 September

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Four await fate

Mere Naleba
Wednesday, December 12, 2012

THE four lawyers representing four Asians charged with human trafficking will deliver their summing-up before High Court judge Justice Paul Madigan this morning.

The assessors are expected to announce a verdict by tomorrow.

The men, charged with human trafficking, are Thailand national Phanat Laojindamanee, Hong Kong national Lum Bing and two Chinese men Zhang Yong and Jason Zong.

The four are alleged to have been involved in the trafficking of three Thai women who arrived in the country on September 7 and were later taken in by Immigration officials on the morning of September 11 from their room at Peninsula International Hotel. The court heard the women arrived with Mr Laojindamanee and Mr Bing.

It's alleged the women were to work as masseuses.

It is also alleged the women were expected to offer sexual services in exchange for money.

The women, Mr Laojindamanee and Mr Bing were received by Zhang Yong at Nadi International Airport from where Mr Yong transported them in a hired van to Suva.

It was while they were visiting massage parlours in Suva that the group was joined by Jason Zong.

The accused said in court they visited massage parlours in the hope of purchasing one and to start a massage business that would specialise in Thai massage.

Mr Yong told the court the women, while inspecting the massage parlours, were not impressed with the condition and the equipment used, and one of them even suggested that water beds be brought in.

The trial continues before Justice Madigan this morning.


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