Lai, who fought hard to hold back tears, said her Chinese employers took away her passport.“Until now I cannot find my passport…I have to be strong to tell everything because they threatened me and my boss threatened me and abused me mentally and physically. I already told them that I want to go home…but they forced me to work for them and always say they have a protector behind them who is government people,” Lai said.
“I think even [if] I run away they will still find me, every time my boss when he is mad he always shouted in Chinese saying ‘You are now my staff, I already bought you from other boss.’ So they say I have to work for them,” she added.
Lai said she pleaded with her employers to give her passport back but to no avail.
“I even tell them that…’ All the thing that wants my passport, if you don’t give my salary, it’s okay.’ They still keep lying to me,” she recalled.
“They treat(ed) me like a slave. I want to be strong, I don’t want to hide my face anymore, I want to tell everyone I’m asking for help. I was frightened by my boss but right now I have to show my face to the public,” she added.
Hontiveros then reiterated her call for the government to crack down on Pogo operations given all the crimes that seem to be tied with it.
“They say that this needs to be reviewed if Pogo should be continued or suspended. It looks like a lot of crime are tied to Pogo: illegal recruitment, illegal detention, sexual harassment and others. Pogo brings crime,” she said.