Vancouver Man Faces Life Sentence for Human-Trafficking Conviction

Thursday, 27 Jun 2013 12:14 PM

By Joel Himelfarb

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A Vancouver, B.C., man faces possible life imprisonment after being convicted Wednesday night on human-trafficking charges for abusing a Filipino nanny.
 
A British Columbia Supreme Court jury also convicted Yu Kwan Orr, 50, of illegally employing the nanny, Leticia Sarmiento, who had cared for his three children from 2007 to 2010, according to the Vancouver Sun.

Orr remains free on bail. He is scheduled to return to court July 10 to set a sentencing hearing.

The jury acquitted Orr’s partner, Oi Ling Nicole Huen, of human trafficking and illegally employing a foreign nanny.

Sarmiento, 40, testified that when she began working for the couple in Hong Kong, she had two days a week off and regular work hours. The pair told her that she would become a permanent resident of Canada after two years.

She said that unlike in Canada, she was allowed to socialize with other people in Hong Kong and was permitted to take the children out of the house. She also had her own cell phone to make calls back to the Philippines.

Sarmiento said all of that changed after she arrived in Canada in September 2008, the Sun reported.

She was forced to clean the house and work 16-hour days seven days a week. Sarmiento testified that when Orr observed her speaking to other nannies at a local community center, he discouraged her from doing so.

In June 2010, Sarmiento called 911 and told police she needed help. She testified that during an altercation over the type of milk she fed children, Huen pushed her.

When police officers responded to the house, Sarmiento packed her bags and was taken to a women’s shelter.

Today, she works as a cleaner.

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