ICE reports about the sentencing of a Togolesian who had been operating hair braiding salons in New Jersey with slave labor.
This conspiracy was as sophisticated as it was debased.
The facts: "At his plea hearing, Hounakey admitted that from October 2002 through September 2007he engaged in a conspiracy to obtain the forced labor of a number of women and girls whom his mother, Akouavi Kpade Afolabi, had brought over from Togo with fraudulent visas. Once the victims entered the United States, Hounakey and his co-defendants required them to work at hair braiding salons for up to 14 hours per day, six or seven days a week. The victims were also required to turn over all of their earnings, including their tips, to the defendants. The defendants did not allow the young women to keep their passports or identification, to speak with their families outside of the defendants' presence, or to make any outside friends.
Hounakey stated that his mother recruited individuals to pose as the relatives of the girls and women and that another defendant, Geoffry Kouevi, helped them study facts about their fake husbands and fathers in order to fraudulently obtain visas. Hounakey also admitted to having sex with several of the victims, one of whom was a minor, and to hitting a girl for making a telephone call without permission, during the course of the conspiracy."
The perp, Derek Hounakey, is not only going to prison for 55 months, he has to pay restitution to his victims ($3,949,140.80). Good riddance, and good.
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