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Miami Herald: Haitian tells of life as 'slave' in Kendall

A Haitian woman testified about modern-day slavery in the federal trial of a Miami-Dade County family accused of forcing her to work without pay for six years.

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A young Haitian woman, speaking slowly with tears running down her cheeks, described her life as a ''slave'' -- thinking that suicide was the only way to escape the Haitian family in South Florida that had held her against her will for six years.

The audience listening to her horror story: 12 federal jurors in a Fort Lauderdale courtroom, where Simone Celestin, 23, testified Wednesday at length about her experience in a Kendall home.

''I thought about drinking motor oil or bleach. I decided not to drink the bleach. I chose motor oil,'' she told the jurors in describing her feelings of despair in November 2004 after being beaten for not making a bed for the family. [More...]


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