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Mother accused of sending minor to work

A MOTHER accused of sending her underage daughter to a recruitment training centre has been arrested, along with a man accused of brokering a deal for the girl’s placement, a police official said yesterday.

Police said 43-year-old mother Ly Yan and 28-year-old broker Kao Setha were arrested on Friday after officials at the recruitment firm VC Manpower filed a complaint accusing them of falsifying documents in order to submit Ly Yan’s daughter, 16, to a training programme that would prepare her to work as a domestic aid in Malaysia.

“While the girl was spending her month at the company [for training], the company found out that the girl’s real age was 16,” said Keo Thea, director of the municipal Bureau of Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection.

“And it was learned that the suspects lied about the girl’s real age and background to make her appear to be legally able to work in Malaysia.”

According to a 1994 sub-decree on migrant labour, trainees must be at least 18 years old before being sent to work abroad.

Meas Chanpiseth, deputy prosecutor at the Municipal Court, said yesterday that charges had been laid against both the mother and the broker, but declined to elaborate further.

“We are now working on the case for which we have already laid charges ... but we cannot say what the charges are because the case is now being investigated,” he said.

On August 16, police officials said that the director of a VC Manpower training centre in Sen Sok district evaded arrest and went into hiding after he was accused of mistreating a trainee under his care.

Pol Khemra, deputy director of the Department of Police at the Interior Ministry, said yesterday that police are still on the hunt for the man.

VC Manpower also came under scrutiny last month when a woman fled one of its training centres and said she had been held against her will.

Days later, authorities announced they had found 24 underage girls being trained by the company. The Labour Ministry initially barred the firm from recruiting clients, but absolved it of wrongdoing soon after.

Oum Mean, a secretary of state at the Ministry of Labour, said yesterday that the ministry had held a training session for recruitment companies on Friday.

He said more than 30 representatives from the companies attended the seminar, at which they discussed the laws pertaining to migrant labour and were reminded “to obey the ministry’s regulations and principles related to trainee ages, requirements for training centres and departures to Malaysia”, he said.

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