Filipino couple in San Francisco charged with trafficking nanny from PH
SAN FRANCISCO – District Attorney Brooke Jenkins filed charges against a Filipino couple for allegedly trafficking a nanny they brought from the Philippines two years ago.
Jose Aguila and his wife, Lorraine Lim, are facing several felony and misdemeanor charges as a result of an investigation into the working conditions of their nanny, “Nicel R.,” the District Attorney’s office announced.
According to prosecutors, a neighbor alerted the San Francisco Police after finding out how Nicel R. was being treated. The SFPD Special Victims Unit rescued the nanny on November 29, 2021.
The couple allegedly brought Nicel R. to the U.S. in June of 2019 and forced her to work seven days a week to take care of their disabled child in addition to other forms of forced labor inside and outside their residence.
The victim told investigators that the couple promised her she would be in the U.S. for only three months, but that turned into more than two years. Through various means, they allegedly isolated Nicel R., who does not speak English, like keeping her passport, and preventing her from having a cellphone. Nicel R. depended on the couple for her food, shelter, and other necessities. She had to sleep a storage room, authorities said.
According to investigators, Aguila and Lim only paid Nicel R. $240 a month for the first several months and then reduced that to $40 per month. She was also required to be available at all times, even in the middle of the night, to care for the couple’s child.
Prosecutors said Aguila and Lim did not provide other mandatory employee benefits such as payment for the substantial overtime hours she worked, meal and rest breaks, paid sick leave, workers’ compensation insurance and proof of wages.
“Each of the suspects posted bond on $100,000 bails set by the court,” the District Attorney’s press release stated. “Pre-trial release conditions include electronic monitoring by the San Francisco Sherriff’s Department, surrendering passports and abiding by the terms of a Criminal Protective Order which states that they must have no contact with the victim and must stay 100 yards away from her. If convicted of all charges, they each face over 19 years in State Prison.”