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Expansion of labour firm OK’d after raid

Expansion of labour firm OK’d after raid

A LABOUR-RECRUITMENT firm that was the target of a raid earlier this week has been given permission to expand in order to better accommodate its clients, officials said yesterday.

Police in Russey Keo district’s Chroy Changvar commune on Monday discovered 232 women and girls crammed into three villas belonging to the Champa Manpower Group.

On Tuesday, Deputy District Governor Ly Rosami called for an investigation of the firm, saying its clients – who had paid to participate in three months of training for jobs as domestic helpers in Malaysia – had been corralled into unsanitary rooms and denied freedom of movement.

A company representative said, however, that only a few women who had threatened to break their contracts had been prohibited from leaving.

Officials from City Hall, the Labour Ministry and the Interior Ministry’s Anti-Human Trafficking Bureau visited the villas yesterday and determined that the company’s facilities were far too small.

“We will give the company owner a chance to make the place bigger, and I will come back to check it again,” said Keo Thea, director of the municipal Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Bureau. “If he does what he’s promised and expands the house, we will not close the company.”

Keo Thea added that the company had a licence to send workers overseas. Workers who decide not to go abroad, he said, will be permitted to leave the villas once they reimburse the company for the expense of securing them visas for Malaysia and feeding them during the training.

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