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Abu Dhabi: Kuwait’s Attorney General, Counsellor, Mohammad Al Duaij said offering housemaids for sale or withholding their salaries is a human trafficking offence with a 15 year jail sentence.

Al Duaij told Al-Rai on Thursday, that the Ministry of Interior represented in the Department of Public Morals Protection and Combating Human Trafficking, is obligated to bring to justice every person who announces the sale of domestic workers.

He explained that human trafficking has two forms: the first is to sell domestic workers in exchange for a financial allowance, i.e. selling the services of domestic workers from one sponsor to another, in return for a sum of money agreed upon by the seller and the buyer, and the second is forcing the workers to work without a salary or part of the salary.

“So companies defaulting on salaries of workers or part of these payments is human trafficking, and the penalty for human trafficking reaches up to 15 years imprisonment, for everyone who commits the act,” Kuwait’s Attorney General said.

He said that human trafficking is one of the crimes that offend Kuwait’s reputation internationally, stressing that its interest, name and reputation prevail over any other consideration or any material loss that can be inflicted on any citizen or resident.

He continued, “one of the issues that we recently registered was a complaint submitted by an Asian worker, claiming that her sponsor had defaulted on her monthly salary for seven years, and that when she asked for her salary, she told her that she was saving her salary for her, and that her salary was deposited with the bank so that no one would steal it. The Kuwaiti sponsor was summoned and she was interrogated and detained. She had to pay the seven-year salaries to the maid who received it in full, and hers is a human trafficking case,” the Attorney General said.