RICHMOND – A federal court in the US state of Virginia has sentenced three members of a Pakistani-American family for torturing their daughter-in-law and compelling her to serve family members as servant for 12 years.
“Zahida Aman, 80, was sentenced to 144 months in federal prison, Mohammed Rehan Chaudhri, 48, to 120 months in federal prison and Mohammad Nauman Chaudhri, 55, to 60 months in federal prison in the Eastern District of Virginia. Additionally, the Court ordered Aman and Rehan Chaudhri to pay the victim $250,000 in restitution for back wages and other financial losses she incurred as a result of the defendants’ criminal conduct,” the court ruling reads.
Aman arranged for her son’s marriage to the Pakistani woman in 2002, but even after the victim’s husband moved away from the home, the defendants did not allow to victim to go back and forced her to serve the extended family as a servant.
“These defendants callously exploited the victim’s vulnerabilities and brutally coerced her labor through physical violence and emotional abuse,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
All the three convicts, according to evidence submitted in the court, compelled the victim to serve the family as a domestic servant, using physical and verbal abuse, restricting communication with her family in Pakistan, confiscating her immigration documentation and money and eventually threatening to separate her from her children by deporting her to Pakistan.
The family member also “slapped, kicked and pushed the victim, even beat her with wooden board, and on one occasion hog-tied her hands and feet and dragged her down the stairs in front of her children. All of these coercive means were employed by the defendants to compel the victim’s labor in their home”.They also restricted her food, forbade her from learning to drive or speaking to anyone except the defendants’ family members and prohibited her from calling her family in Pakistan.