KLANG: Tan Sri Kenneth Eswaran and his wife have claimed trial in the Sessions Court to three counts of exploitation and forced labour of their three Indonesian domestic helpers.
The 58-year-old former president of the Malaysian Associated Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MAICCI) and Puan Sri Vivienne Ketheeswaran, 63, pleaded not guilty after the charges were read out before Sessions Court judge Roszianayati Ahmad here yesterday.
Eswaran, whose birth name is K. Ketheeswaran, and Vivienne were jointly accused of trafficking the women – aged 25, 29 and 41 – for the exploitation of forced labour.
The offences were allegedly committed at a house in Jalan Cinta Alam, Country Heights, Kajang, between October 2012 and March this year.
The charges under Section 12 of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act 2007 carry a jail term of up to 15 years and liable to a fine, if convicted.
Deputy public prosecutor Fatnin Yusof offered bail at RM50,000 each.
Lawyer Shashi Devan, who represented the couple, agreed to the bail amount, saying his clients were ready to post the bail.
Roszianayati fixed bail at RM50,000 in one surety each.
The judge also ordered the accused to surrender their passports to the court.
The case is fixed for mention on May 3.