Vietnam prostitutes kept in dog cages

Dec. 9, 2008 at 12:53 PM

HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Some 130 women were held prisoner, some in dog cages, at a Ho Chi Minh City brothel, forced to work as prostitutes 18 hours per day, local media reports say.

The Thanh Nien newspaper said police found the women after launching a raid triggered by letters from the captive women, but the brothel owner got away, The Daily Telegraph (Britain) reported Tuesday.

The Vietnamese newspaper said the women, many of whom were from poor rural families, were kept as slaves in debt bondage and if they refused to perform sexual acts on customers they were severely punished by the owner, known as Tri, and his men.

"In nine months, I have seen more than 10 girls try to escape but they were captured, tortured by Tri and put in dog cages," said one of the rescued women.

The Telegraph quoted Thanh Nien saying the women were fed half a fish and a small bowl of soup at every meal, for which they were forced to pay $185 per month. The women were also reportedly forced to pay Tri and his men "tuition" for "teaching" them sex acts.

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