If you ever had any doubt that slavery still exists, meet Bidemi Bello. The 41-year-old Nigerian immigrant was recently convicted in U.S. federal court of luring young Nigerian women into slavery by promising to get them jobs as nannies, and provide them with the opportunity to get an education.

According to prosecutors, Bello was a “merciless task-mistress with no qualms about submitting her victims to inhumane conditions.” Many of the women claimed she frequently physically and verbally abused them, forced them to live under inhumane conditions, fed them spoiled food, and forced them to do tasks around her house.

The Root reports that Bello was charged with “human trafficking, harboring aliens, making false statements on citizenship applications, forced labor and seizing her victims’ passports to force them into servitude.”

Bello’s terrorized young Nigerian women for nearly a decade before prosecutors were able to put an end to her cruel practices. She is facing up to 35 years in prison and a $750,000 fine.

 

*Photo courtesy of The Root

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  • WOW. Reminds me of a novel I read by Pearl Cleage about something very similar going on in Atlanta. Guess she wasn’t too far off with her story.

  • Amber

    @Erin,

    I was thinking the very same thing about the Pearl Cleage novel.

    Glad she was caught!

  • Miss

    It’s crazy to think that this woman got away with it for nearly a decade!

  • anon

    Human trafficking is becoming an epidemic in this country. In Sacramento, CA there are some of the highest incidences in the country.

  • Pseudonym

    They should pay that $750K (minus court costs) to the victim as backpay wages.