Nail Salon Proprietor Is Sentenced To fifteen Years In Jail For Compelling A Sufferer’s Labor For Nearly Two Years | USAO-WDNC

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – U.S. District Court docket Choose Kenneth D. Bell sentenced Thuy Tien Luong, 38, of Charlotte, North Carolina, to fifteen years in jail, adopted by two years of supervised launch, and ordered her to pay $75,000 in restitution to the sufferer. A federal jury beforehand convicted the defendant of compelled labor on Jan. 8, 2021, following a five-day trial.

In accordance with the proof offered at trial, Luong compelled the sufferer’s labor for nearly two years via quite a lot of coercive means. The defendant bodily, emotionally and verbally punished the sufferer when she disobeyed the defendant or in any other case didn’t carry out the required labor to the defendant’s satisfaction. For instance, the defendant falsely claimed that the sufferer owed her a debt of $180,000, made her signal a debt contract, and threatened to go to the police if the sufferer didn’t proceed to work to repay the fabricated debt. The defendant beat the sufferer with nail salon instruments, together with cuticle clippers, nail recordsdata and brooms leaving the sufferer with scars, bruises and marks. She additionally threatened to spoil the sufferer’s repute together with her household by threatening to inform them info that may negatively impression the sufferer’s relationship together with her household. The defendant’s scheme triggered the sufferer to proceed working for the defendant till a very violent assault led her to report the defendant to the Davidson Police Division.  

“This defendant used psychological coercion, debt bondage and violence to interrupt down the desire of one in all her staff, exploit her vulnerabilities and drive her to work lengthy hours beneath menace of significant hurt,” mentioned Assistant Lawyer Normal Kristen Clarke of the Justice Division’s Civil Rights Division. “There continues to be no place for such merciless conduct in our society, and the Division of Justice stays dedicated to figuring out and eliminating human trafficking.”

“Human trafficking is human struggling and it has no place in fashionable society,” mentioned U.S. Lawyer Dena J. King of the Western District of North Carolina. “As our nation prepares to commemorate Juneteenth, it’s troublesome to know that there are nonetheless individuals in our communities subjected to a lifetime of servitude, compelled to work lengthy hours for little or no pay, abused bodily and mentally by those that make use of them. Traffickers who use their victims as commodities, reap the benefits of their wants and exploit their vulnerabilities for private achieve will likely be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the regulation.”

“Luong’s egregious legal conduct is a type of human trafficking that not solely exploited our nation’s labor legal guidelines, but in addition subjected the sufferer to unspeakable hurt, together with bodily and psychological abuse,” mentioned Particular Agent in Cost Ronnie Martinez, who oversees Homeland Safety Investigations (HSI) operations in North Carolina and South Carolina. “Fortunately, HSI and its regulation enforcement companions have put an finish to Luong’s exercise and he or she is going through appropriately extreme penalties. Pursuing human traffickers and defending their victims stays a high precedence of HSI.” 

Assistant Lawyer Normal Clarke, U.S. Lawyer King and Particular Agent in Cost Martinez introduced immediately’s sentence. The case was investigated by HSI with help from the Davidson Police Division and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Division. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Lawyer Kimlani M. Ford of the Western District of North Carolina and Trial Lawyer Maryam Zhuravitsky of the Civil Rights Division’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit. Trial Lawyer Jessica Arco of the Civil Rights Division’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit assisted with sentencing and restitution on this matter.

Anybody who has details about human trafficking ought to report that info to the Nationwide Human Trafficking Hotline toll-free at 1-888-373-7888, which is out there 24 hours a day, seven days per week. For extra details about human trafficking, please go to www.humantraffickinghotline.org.

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