Three Virginia family members were sentenced for forcing another family member into “modern-day slavery” for over a decade.
Marrying into a Family that Resulted in ‘Modern-Day Slavery’
80-year-old Zahida Aman, with her two sons, 54-year-old Mohammed Naumman Chaudhri and 48-year-old Mohammed Rehan Chaudhri were convicted of conspiracy to commit forced labor. The court ordered a $250,000 payment for the victim in restitution for back wages and other financial losses she incurred during her 12 years in forced labor.
Prosecutors reported that Aman arranged for one of her sons to marry the victim last 2002. The victim was housed at the family’s Virginia home to serve the extended family even after the victim’s husband moved out. The prosecutors expressed that the family exploited the victim and brutally coerced her labor through physical violence and emotional abuse. This happened as they forced her through physical and verbal abuse and restricted her communication with her family in Pakistan.
The Reason for this Inhuman Act
The main reason for the victim’s status is that the family confiscated her immigration documentation and money and threatened to separate her from her children by deporting her to Pakistan. There were even times that the family hog-tied the woman’s hands and feet and dragged her down the stairs in front of her children.
As stated in a post by Fox News, she was forced to work every day with plenty of restrictions that could possibly give her chances of running away. She was forbidden from learning to drive, speaking with anyone but the family members, and could not call her family in Pakistan. U.S. Attorney Jessica D. Alber described her forced labor as a “modern-day equivalent of slavery.”