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Staffing firm owners indicted

April 29 2010

The owners of a Florida staffing firm face criminal charges in relation to a human trafficking scheme, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida announced Wednesday.

Sophia Manuel and Alfonso Baldonado Jr., owners of Quality Staffing Services Corp. of Boca Raton FL, allegedly brought in workers from the Philippines and compelled them work for little or no pay while housing them in substandard conditions, according to the office.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, "the indictment alleges that the defendants used false promises to entice the Filipino nationals to incur debts to pay up-front recruitment fees; and then compelled the workers to remain in the defendants' service, despite inadequate work or income to pay off the debts, using a scheme of threats to have the workers arrested and deported with no way to repay their debts, confiscation of the workers' passports and rules and controls restricting the workers' freedom of movement and communications with outsiders."

The workers were brought in to work at country clubs and hotels, according to the indictment.

To download a copy of the indictment, click the button below.

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