Woodbury, Minnesota: Police in Woodbury city of Minnesota in the Unites States have charged a woman with beating and starving a woman she brought from China to work as a nanny.
A prosecutor said that the woman held the nanny in a state of "slavery or indentured servitude."
Lili Huang, 35, of Woodbury is charged in Washington County with five felony counts, including labor trafficking, false imprisonment and assault. Huang remains in jail after making her initial court appearance Friday, the Star Tribune reported.
The 58-year-old woman, who is not named in the complaint, arrived in the U.S. on a visa in late March. According to the complaint, the nanny was forced to work up to 18 hours a day doing child care, cooking and cleaning. Police calculate her pay at about $1.80 an hour, but she apparently did not receive any of it.
The woman recently was found wandering in the street, her eyes blackened. A hospital exam found she had many broken bones. The woman told the police in the complaint that she had been beaten, starved and threatened with death by her employer.
The nanny had also been forced to walk on all fours for hours "like a dog" and fed her own hair, she said.
She was rationed crackers for meals and her weight had dropped from 120 pounds when she arrived in the U.S. to 88 pounds, the complaint said.
The woman was never allowed to leave the house, the complaint said. The nanny told a police investigator she eventually fled the house when Huang threatened to kill her with a knife. She told police she was looking for the airport so she could go home to China, the complaint said.
“She had been promised $890 a month but was forced by her employer to work up to 18 hours a day cooking, cleaning and taking care of the Huangs' child, according to the complaint. Her salary only came out to about $1.80 an hour, authorities later calculated, but she said she never even received that amount,” The Washington Post reported.
Washington County prosecutor Pete Orput said the nanny was held in appalling conditions, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.
Dan Le, a Minneapolis attorney for Huang, did not immediately respond to a phone message and email from The Associated Press on Saturday.
Police from four cities and agents from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security searched Huang's home and arrested her, the complaint said.
A bag hidden under the nanny's mattress contained a large amount of her hair, which Huang allegedly ripped from the woman's head. The nanny had been hiding it so Huang wouldn't find it "and force her to eat it," the complaint said.
On July 4, Huang grabbed the woman's hair and bashed her head into a table and other objects, the nanny reportedly told police. She was also punched and kicked in her rib cage, according to the complaint. On July 10, the nanny badly beaten and "she could not get up off her hands and knees," prosecutors said.
(With AP inputs)