Businessperson K Ketheeswaran, better known as Kenneth Eswaran, and his wife, Vivienne Ketheeswaran, were charged in the Sessions Court today on three counts of trafficking for the purpose of exploitation of three Indonesian maids between 2012 and last month.
Ketheeswaran, 58, and Vivienne, 63, pleaded not guilty after the charges were read out to them before judge Roszianayati Ahmad.
Ketheeswaran, who is the former president of the Malaysian Associated Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MAICCI), and Vivienne were charged with trafficking the three women, aged 25, 29 and 41, for the purpose of exploitation through forced labour at a house in Kajang between October 2012 and March 21 this year.
They were charged under Section 12 of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act 2007, read together with Section 34 of the Penal Code, which provides for a maximum jail term of 15 years and a fine upon conviction.
Judge Roszianayati fixed May 3 for the mention of the case and for fixing the dates for the hearing.
She allowed them to be released on bail of RM50,000 in one surety each on all the charges and ordered them to surrender their passports to the court pending the settlement of the case.
DPP Fatnin Yusof, who appeared for the prosecution, proposed the RM50,000 bail and requested the court to keep their passports and counsel Shashi Devan said his clients would post the bail and hand over their travel documents.