Thursday, August 13, 2009

Maid to sue Lucio Tan’s estranged brother for abuse

An 18-year-old housemaid who was rescued by authorities from the house of businessman Lucio Tan’s estranged brother Monday is determined to pursue charges against her former employer.

In a statement, lawyer Anna Marie Trinidad said yesterday that Mary Jane Sollano has decided to execute her sworn statement and complaint before the Department of Justice (DOJ) despite an agreement signed by the victim’s family with the lawyer of Mariano Tan as a condition for her release from five years of reported imprisonment in Tan’s house.

Trinidad said they are thinking of filing charges of serious illegal detention and maltreatment against Sollano’s employers.

Sollano, who worked for Tan’s household for five years, allegedly suffered physical, emotional and psychological abuse in the hands of Tan’s wife, Aleta, and their two children.

She told police that she was not allowed to leave the house or call relatives. She also claimed she was not given enough food to eat and didn’t even have the opportunity to check the calendar.

Fearing she was dead, her parents learned of their daughter’s whereabouts only through the help of Aljane Bacanto, a fellow housemaid who recently escaped the Tan household.

Sollano’s father then sought the help of friends and private lawyers who then brought them to the Commission on Human Rights to seek assistance from authorities.

Sollano and her parents had a tearful reunion after five years without contact, Trinidad said.

Trinidad said Sollano was still recovering yesterday following her rescue Monday from Tan’s house along Biak-na-Bato street in Sto. Domingo, Quezon City. She is set to undergo a battery of physical, emotional and psychological tests.

Quoting Bacanto’s affidavit, Trinidad said the Tans have been tying Sollano up.

Barangay watchmen told The STAR that Sollano often displayed a piece of cardboard, on which she wrote a message seeking help from passersby, at the window of the room where she was locked up after she did household chores.

The Philippine Star
August 12, 2009
Page 18


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