|Vietnamese labourers, who were rescued by Cambodian authorities, are received by Vietnamese police as they return to Việt Nam via Mộc Bài International Border Gate on September 21.— VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Tân|
HÀ NỘI — Nguyễn Minh K., 24, of Ninh Thuận Province, still can't believe he was illegally sold to a casino in Cambodia.
At the beginning of March this year, he worked in an industrial park in the southern province of Bình Dương. One of his acquaintances introduced him to a job in Cambodia with a promising salary of $1,000 per month and free accommodation.
He agreed and followed his acquaintance to go to Cambodia illegally. However, he said he was taken to a casino when he arrived in Cambodia.
He suspected he had been cheated and immediately called his acquaintance but could not get hold of him.
He found out from the manager that he had been sold to the casino for $3,500.
At the casino, he was beaten, electrocuted and starved if he failed to finish his tasks, which tricked online gambling players into depositing their money to participate in the game and receive awards.
Later, K was rescued by Cambodian authorities and returned to Việt Nam through Mộc Bài International Border Gate.
Ngô Tiến L., 28, of Hạ Long City, the north-eastern province of Quảng Ninh, was in the same situation.
L came to Cambodia following an advertisement on social networks inviting him to work in Cambodia for a salary of VNĐ20 million (US$841) per month.
When he arrived in Cambodia, he realised he was a victim of illegal labour trafficking.
He said his tasks included communicating with Tiktok users to get them to follow the casino's account. Then he invited them to a gambling game and awarded them the first rewards.
After receiving the rewards, the players were asked to deposit money to continue joining the game. The money was transferred to the casino's account, he said. The money that players had to deposit increased day after day.
When a player wants to withdraw money, L would lock the account.
He also said the casino assigned a team of three workers to earn VNĐ50 million ($2,100) daily from the players.
He said that if the workers failed, they were beaten, electrocuted, starved, or sold to another casino.
L is one of 71 Vietnamese victims who fled from Lucky 88 Casino in Cambodia and was rescued by Cambodian authorities. He returned to Việt Nam on September 21.
K and L are among many Vietnamese workers who, believing in the advertisement to work in Cambodia with an income of US$500-1,000 per month, have tried to enter Cambodia and become victims of labour scams illegally.
Many workers must pay a large sum of money to the casinos to return home.
Recently, Cambodian-authorised forces have conducted raids at disguised casinos.
Data from the Border Guard Command of Tây Ninh Province show, from early September to September 28, the unit received 100 Vietnamese workers working at disguised casinos in Cambodia, handed over by Cambodian authorities through Mộc Bài International Border Gate.
Careful with scams
Senior Lieutenant Colonel Trần Văn Đông, head of the Police Office in Bến Cầu District, Tây Ninh Province, warned that people who intend to go to Cambodia to find jobs should be alerted to the risks and tricks of labour traffickers across the border.
People should not illegally leave the country to work abroad. That would be a violation of the law, he said.
Before entering a country to work, he said people must know clearly about the job and the workplace's location.
Colonel Lê Hồng Vương, Commander of the province's Border Guard Command, said the most painful problem was that the workers tried to go to Cambodia to earn money but ended up in debt. Sometimes their families even had to pay the casinos to secure their release.
If social networking sites enticed people to Cambodia to work illegally, he said they should immediately report it to the nearest local authorities for help.
Vương suggested the victims who returned from Cambodia warn their relatives and friends about the dangers when illegally working abroad to prevent people from falling into labour scams. — VNS