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Malaysia plans special court on human trafficking as cases soar

Posted by jaypee 34 days ago Malaysia
http://www.thedailystar.net —

Malaysia is setting up a special court to tackle rising numbers of human trafficking cases, in a move welcomed by campaigners who said it would help deliver justice to victims.


The Southeast Asian nation relies heavily on foreign domestic workers as well as laborers from countries including Indonesia, Bangladesh and Nepal for jobs shunned by locals including work on plantations and in construction.


It has nearly two million registered migrant workers, according to government data, but rights groups say there are also many others who work in the country without permits.


But advocacy groups say many of the workers are victims of human trafficking and debt bondage, who had to fork out huge sums to pay recruiters in return for jobs that paid much less than the ones they were promised.


Under a pilot project, the special court is expected to be set up as early as May in the central state of Selangor, with a dedicated judge to hear cases, before it is gradually rolled out in other parts of the country.