California Church Leaders Charged with Using Homeless for Forced Labour

Published September 12th, 2019 - 07:15 GMT

California based church leaders have been charged with the imprisonment and forced labor of homeless people. They were promised food and shelter, but instead, they were forced to beg for money, working nine hours a day, six days a week. 

The church leaders have since been arrested, and now they are facing charges of conspiracy, forced labor, document servitude and benefits fraud.


Officials said the church, whose stated purpose is to "restore" drug addicts, have been luring victims since 2013 with promises of free food, shelter and monetary assistance to eventually return home. However, these victims were held captive, stripped of their mere financial needs, their identification, their freedom and their dignity.

This incident sparked anger and rage among people, describing it as an appalling abuse of power. This case has also highlighted the chronic problem of homelessness in California.

Officials announced that all of the victims have been identified and are now free. Support services have been made available to them. 

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