The early release of a Hong Kong woman jailed for abusing and torturing her Indonesian domestic workers has been condemned by the former maid and a migrant workers’ association.
Former domestic worker Erwiana Sulistyaningsih said she was sad and disappointed to learn of the early release of her former employer Law Wan-tung, and urged the Hong Kong government to better protect migrant domestic workers in Hong Kong.
Erwiana, who is in Indonesia, expressed her dismay in a voice message played at a media briefing held by the Justice for Erwiana and All Migrant Domestic Workers Committee on Thursday, sunwebhk.com reported.
The group urged the Hong Kong government to “explain and tell the public why” Law had been granted an early release.
Law was sentenced to six years in prison on February 10, 2015, for badly abusing Erwiana and another Indonesian domestic worker, Tutik Lestari, but was reportedly allowed early release in September by the Correctional Services Department.
Law served a little more than half of her six-year prison sentence.
“I feel very sad and disappointed when I learned that my former employer, Law Wan-tung, was released from jail earlier than actual imprisonment that she had to serve,” Erwiana said.
“The six-year sentence is not even adequate for the terrible crimes that she committed against me and the other victims,” she said.
Erwiana said that over the past few years, Law Wan-tung had not admitted to her wrongdoing, had made no apology to her victims and not yet paid the HK$810,000 in compensation the court ordered her to pay to her in December last year, hongkongnews.com.hk reported.
Tutik, who was present at the news conference, said she was now afraid for her safety because of Law’s previous threats to kill her and her family.
Cynthia Abdon-Tellez, the general manager of Mission for Migrant Workers, expressed her anger at the decision to free Law early, since she has refused to admit her guilt and show remorse.
She said they would take legal advice on what action should be taken in response to Law’s early release. Erwiana also urged the Hong Kong government to immediately reform the unfavorable regulations for foreign domestic workers and ensure there would be no more victims of domestic violence and slavery in the city.