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Head of Giant Ocean Recruitment Company Arrested on Charges of Human Trafficking 

2013-05-10 - CLEC

On May 10, 2013 at 10.50am in Siem Reap, Lin Yu, Shin was arrested on charges of human trafficking in relation to her position as head of Giant Ocean International Fishery Co.Ltd, a recruitment agency that was granted license to recruit and send labor to Japan.

Lin Yu, Shin, a female Taiwanese citizen, was apprehended in the Siem Reap Night Market earlier today after several months of investigation from the working group of CLEC, LICADHO and LSCW. The Phnom Penh court issued her arrest warrant after more than a year of complaints from at least 80 victims. Since being issued a license to recruit, Giant Ocean has reportedly sent hundreds of Cambodian fishermen to work in countries such as Singapore, China, South Africa, Senegal, and Indonesia. These destination countries not only go against the conditions of the Giant Ocean license, but also fail to reflect the contracts signed by the laborers themselves. Upon arrival, laborers were immediately put to work on fishing vessels on which they were subjected to harsh working conditions, forced labor (often more than 20 hours per day), debt bondage, and physical abuse. The men were typically held at sea for months, and in some cases, years at a time, with very little hope of contacting relatives at home, or even receiving pay for their work.

In 2012, Giant Ocean was accused of illegally sending workers to China after former workers and their relatives filed complaints. Soon after, the recruitment office in Phnom Penh was closed and Lin Yun, Shin went into hiding in Siem Reap, attempting to pass herself off as an art merchant. Since then, CLEC has received 34 distinct complaints from both relatives of missing men and fishermen trapped overseas. In the past year, CLEC has facilitated the repatriation of 19 Giant Ocean victims many of whom claim there are more than 1,000 Khmer fisherman still stranded off the coast of Africa.  

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