After two years on the run, trafficker sentenced to 17 years in prison - IJM Hong Kong
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After two years on the run, trafficker sentenced to 17 years in prison

The man, who trafficked two young girls into domestic servitude, was arrested by Cambodian police after IJM received a tip-off.

July 2023

12-year-old Ny* and 16-year-old Lalin* grew up in the same village in Cambodia. Dreaming of a better life, the two friends were excited when a man came to their village offering them jobs with high salaries in Malaysia.

The man seemed kind, professional and trustworthy. Ny’s mother was hesitant but, unable to afford an education for her daughter, she decided to support her wishes to go to Malaysia.

The young friends travelled abroad for the very first time, arriving in Malaysia at night. But instead of being taken to an office, they were taken to an abandoned house.

“I thought I would be with Lalin but when we arrived there,
we were separated,” Ny remembers sadly.


A trafficker had tricked Ny and Lalin with a false job offer and trafficked them across international borders into domestic servitude:

“My employer’s children hit me, pulled my hair and spat in my food.
I felt hurt and worthless,” Lalin told us.

Imagine being trapped in a foreign country. Isolated. Abused. Forced to work long hours with little food. Ny was also sexually assaulted: “I was very scared… I thought of ending my life.”


Ny and Lalin were trapped in slavery in Malaysia for two years until, thanks to the support of people like you, IJM worked with police to bring the girls to safety and repatriate them.

“When they helped me return to Cambodia, I felt reborn.” – Lalin


IJM helped file a case against the trafficker, but he managed to escape arrest and disappear.

Last year, after two years on the run, IJM received a tip-off about the trafficker’s whereabouts. Cambodian police moved quickly to arrest him:

“It was a tense affair as he tried to escape when he spotted the police, but we thank God for their quick action to arrest him before he jumped off the stairs,” said an IJM Cambodia staff member.

Sentenced to 17 years in prison, this trafficker is no longer a threat to vulnerable people. Three other accomplices were convicted for six years.

“Our staff worked relentlessly to provide legal representation for both survivors and ensured they received aftercare support to cope with the trauma,” said Jacob Sims, Field Office Director for IJM Cambodia.

Today Ny and Lalin are moving forward, knowing that the people who caused their suffering have been held to account.

Now 18 years old, Ny told us: “I felt relieved after the trafficker was arrested. I’m training to be a stylist in a salon. I’m excited to welcome my baby soon.” 

*Pseudonym. To protect IJM survivors, we have obscured some images.

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