Seafood exporters lawsuit (re human trafficking in Thailand)
In June 2016, seven Cambodian former employees at a Thai seafood factory that produces seafood for export to the USA filed a civil lawsuit in a California federal court against two US (Rubicon Resources LLC, Wales & Co Universe) and two Thai companies (Phatthana Seafood and SS Frozen Food). The lawsuit also mentions Walmart as one of Phatthana Seafood’s customers. In November 2016, the court denied the defendants' motion and ruled that the lawsuit can proceed.
While employed in the factory, the plaintiffs allegedly suffered from severe working and living conditions, underpayment, unlawful salary reductions, restrictions of movement and other serious abuses.
The lawsuit also alleges human trafficking, forced labour and servitude.
The companies filed a motion to dismiss the complaint arguing that the alleged conduct occurred outside the USA and the court did not have jurisdiction over the case. In November 2016, the court denied the defendants' motion and ruled that the lawsuit can proceed.