An Indian couple in Melbourne has been jailed for keeping a Tamil woman captive as a slave for eight years.
Kumuthini Kannan and her husband Kandasamy were found guilty of intentionally possessing and exercising the right of ownership over a slave between 2007 and 2015. The woman was discovered when the accused contacted the paramedics in July 2015 after finding her shivering in a pool of urine.
When paramedics arrived at the scene, they found that the victim, now in her 60s, weighed just 40kg and had no teeth. Doctors found she had diabetes and septicaemia. She spent the next two months recovering at the hospital before being shifted to an aged care facility.
Investigation revealed that the victim had come to Melbourne in 2007 on a 30-day tourist visa. She was forced to work up to 23 hours a day. The accused throw hot water and tea at her and even beat her with a frozen chicken. She was paid about $3.36 per day.
Following a probe, the couple was taken into custody. On Wednesday, there were sentenced to 8 years imprisonment.
“No one has expressed any sense of regret or sorrow – it’s a fairly remarkable absence of humanity,” Justice John Champion told the Vicsupreme court on Wednesday.
“Your primary focus seems to have been on yourselves. You both grossly exploited a vulnerable person for which you should be ashamed ... I am quite convinced that you both believe you did nothing wrong," he added.
While the woman was in the hospital in 2015, the couple lied about the victim’s true identity to stop authorities from discovering the truth.
Referring to the same, the judge said, "The number and brazen quality of the lies has been nothing short of astonishing. I'm quite convinced that you both believe you have done nothing wrong. Neither of you have shown remorse or contrition."