HOUSTON, Texas – A couple from Katy, Texas, has been arrested by federal authorities and charged with holding a Nigerian woman in slave-like conditions in their home for two years.
Chudy and Sandra Nsobundu, 56 and 50, were arrested on Monday and will appear in federal court on Tuesday. They are charged with forced labor, withholding documents, conspiracy to harbor an illegal alien and visa fraud. The victim in the case is a 38-year-old woman from Nigeria, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Houston obtained by Breitbart Texas.
The victim was reportedly subjected to physical and verbal abuse while she was employed by the Katy couple. They regularly referred to her as “the idiot” and would allegedly hit her and drag her by the hair.
Katy is located just west of Houston.
She was worked illegally in their home as a domestic servant. She was forced to work from 5:30 a.m. until well past midnight, the criminal complaint revealed. Her duties were said to have included: cleaning the house, making meals, and caring for five children in the home.
She claims she was not allowed to watch television or even sit down during her workday. She said she was forced to sleep on the floor and was not allowed to use warm water to bathe or wash her hair.
She appears to have been forced to live in horrible conditions. According to the affidavit, she was not allowed to eat fresh food, but instead, she had to eat leftovers from previously prepared meals. If she wanted milk in her tea, she was forced to strain the milk from the cereal bowls of the children’s breakfast.
In one incident, she was allegedly punished for putting socks on the children that the parents did not approve of. She said she was struck across the face and dragged by the hair.
She was not allowed any communication with the outside world. She was mostly kept inside the home, but on occasions she was allowed to walk around the block with the children. She was also not allowed access to her passport and travel documents.
The family initially agreed to pay the victim 20,000 Nigerian nairas per month. That amount translates to $100 per month in U.S. dollars. However, the couple reportedly never paid her anything at all.
A tip was made to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center and, after more than two years in captivity, the woman was rescued from the home on October 10, 2015. That department can be reached via a hotline, 1-888-373-7888.
If the couple is convicted on the charges they face up to twenty years in prison on the forced labor charge, 25 years on the visa fraud charge, five years on the withholding documents charge and ten years on the harboring and conspiracy charge. They could also face a fine of up to $250,000.
Bob Price is a senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.