New Orleans makes “Historic Verdict” in Human Trafficking of Workers

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Southern Poverty Law Center and Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AAALDEF), both Freedom Network partners, were successful in winning a landmark case against human trafficking in New Orleans this week.  The lawsuit was filed against a shipbuilding company, Signal International Shipyard, located in Pascagoula, Miss.  This has been named a ‘historic verdict’ in the field of human trafficking.

The five plaintiffs, skilled labor worker who were recruited from India, were brought to the U.S. under recruiters’ false promises of green cards and U.S. residency.  Upon arrival, the men were instead made to live in cramped “man camps” near the shipyard, and could not take other jobs in the U.S., faced with debt as the threat of leaving their position.

The jury awarded nearly $5 million in compensatory damages and another $9 million in punitive damages against Signal specifically.

Read more about the case here.