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The Region

An Indonesian woman tearfully recalled how she worked up to 19 hours a day as a virtual slave for an elderly woman and had to steal food from her “owner” in order to survive. Ni Putu Kartini, 29, said the woman’s children recruited her in 1979 to leave her $6 a month job in Indonesia for the promise of $100 a month in Los Angeles. Kartini testified that when she arrived they confiscated her passport, turned in her return ticket and Indonesian identification card and forced her to work until she fled three months later. She said she asked to return to Indonesia, but was told she had to work for three years. Kartini was the first of 11 Indonesians expected to testify in the federal court trial of Nasim Mussry and his sister, Elsa Singman, who are charged with conspiring to import 60 people and sell them into virtual slavery to friends, relatives and others who allegedly paid a $3,000 fee.


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