A Filipino woman who was charged with trafficking her 16-year-old niece for exploitation was denied bail at a Malaysian court.
In May, Nur Farini Dasid had brought her niece to Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia to work at a massage parlor. At the Sessions Court, Dasid denied the trafficking charge and filed for bail, The Borneo Post reported.
Dasid was previously charged with violating Section 14 of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act 2007, which has a maximum penalty of a jail term of 20 years and a fine upon conviction.
In court, the prosecutor objected to the application for bail on the grounds that Dasid may abscond as she is not a Malaysian. The prosecution also urged the court to take into consideration that the victim is a minor and related to the accused.
There are around 400,000 undocumented Filipinos in Malaysia. Only 5,844 Filipinos took advantage of Malaysia’s Voluntary Deportation Program, which was launched in 2016 and ended in August of this year. Illegal migrants caught since August will be kept in detention while undergoing deportation proceedings.