Indian National Convicted Under Anti-Trafficking Law

22 December 2008
Kuala Lumpur

32-year-old Punitha Raja has become the first person to be convicted in Malaysia under Section 13 of the Anti-Trafficking In Persons Act 2007 for forcing a 33-year-old woman into prostitution.

The Indian national pleaded guilty to committing the offence at her rented residence along Jalan Kolam Air 5, Sentul, on 7 December 2008 at 2:40pm.

The victim was duped into the promise of a job as a maid by her Indian agent. When she was received by Punitha here, she forced her to become a prostitute. When the victim refused, she was physically assaulted by Punitha. She was also threatened that her family in India would be killed if she refused to comply.

The victim was forced to stay in a hotel for a week while Punitha brought her food daily. The victim had to serve 20 to 25 customers daily but none of the earned money was given to her.

On 7 December 2008, the victim sought the help of a taxi driver and escaped to the Indian embassy. She later lodged a police report at the Sentul district headquarters.

In court, Punitha was sentenced to 8 years’ jail and ordered that her term to commence from the date of her arrest, which was 7 December 2008.

The Star Online – First to be convicted under anti-trafficking law

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