Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Another maid files maltreatment charges vs Tanenglian family

A 19-year-old woman yesterday filed criminal charges before the Department of Justice (DOJ) against Lucio Tan’s brother Mariano Tanenglian, his wife and two children for allegedly maltreating her while working as their house help for at least three years.

Aljane Bacanto, a resident of Padre Burgos, Southern Leyte, was the one who helped authorities rescue her fellow housemaid Mary Jane Sollano on August 10.

Bacanto filed charges of maltreatment, serious illegal detention, slavery and frustrated homicide two weeks after Sollano filed her separate complaint against the Tanenglians.

Aside from Mariano, the housemaids named his wife Aleta, and children Fayette and Maximilian as respondents.

In her complaint-affidavit, Bacanto recounted that she started working as a maid in the Tanenglian household in May 2006 until February this year, when she was allowed to return to her province.

During her three-year stay with the Tanenglians, Bacanto claimed that she and the other housemaids were not allowed to go out, use the telephone and other facilities of the house.

She said her employers would always make sure that the doors were locked and that there were guards outside to prevent them from escaping.

Bacanto added that although she was allowed to write letters to her family, the Tanenglians would dictate what to tell her family.

She said her workday starts as early as 4 a.m and lasts until 12 midnight, and that she and other house help were not given enough food and water.

“We were not allowed to laugh, chat and rest or even use the telephone, radio and television,” Bacanto added.

The complainant added that she was only given food whenever her employers were satisfied with her job and that even the refrigerators were padlocked.

Bacanto said the Tanenglians would beat them up whenever they were caught eating the family’s food or using cellular phones or listening to the radio.

“If we fell asleep during work hours, they would hurt us. There were times that we were not able to eat for three consecutive days, prompting us to steal food. When they caught us, we were severely beaten,” she said.

Bacanto’s statement supported that of Sollano. She was the one who reported their ordeal to the family of Sollano after she left Tanenglian’s house, which led to the rescue of the latter.

Bacanto said she was allowed to return to Tacloban in February 2009 by her employers, who gave her P8,000 for her mother.

Joel San Juan
Business Mirror
September 8, 2009


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