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16 Jun 2016

Sebastien Malo, Reuters

U.S. lawsuit against seafood importers makes claims of human trafficking

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Rural Cambodian villagers have filed a lawsuit against four U.S. and Thai companies, accusing them of trafficking and making them work in forced-labor conditions in a Thai seafood factory.  Their civil complaint filed in California federal court accuses the four companies in a joint venture of violating the Trafficking Victims Protection Act…Retailing giant Walmart purchases shrimp…according to the complaint.  The five men and two women filing suit in a Los Angeles court claim that after they left their homeland for Thailand, factory managers confiscated their passports and made them work up to six days a week for wages that were less than promised…The complaint claims the Cambodian workers were victims of involuntary and debt servitude, forced labor and human trafficking…The named companies include Rubicon Resources, incorporated in Delaware with an office in Culver City, California, and Wales & Co. Universe Ltd., incorporated in Thailand but registered to conduct business in California, the complaint said.  The two Thai companies are Phatthana Seafood and S.S. Frozen Food…The workers are seeking an unspecified amount of money for unpaid wages, mental anguish, pain and suffering…

Part of the following timelines

Cambodian victims of trafficking file lawsuit against seafood importers in California

Seafood exporters lawsuit (re human trafficking in Thailand)