Nanny cross-examined in human trafficking trial
Franco Orr and Nicole Huen say they planned to send Leticia Samiento home
The Filipina nanny whose employers are on trial for human trafficking was cross-examined Friday in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver, revealing a much different version of events leading up to the night police arrived at the house.
Franco Orr and his wife Nicole Huen are on trial for allegedly bringing Leticia Sarmiento to Canada illegally and forcing her to work in domestic servitude for several years.
The couple had brought the live-in nanny with them when they moved to Canada from Hong Kong in 2008, and Sarmiento cared for the family's three children until she called the police in June 2010.
Orr and Huen maintain that in the spring of 2009, when their nanny Leticia Sarmiento's visa expired, she went from being an employee to being a house guest.
Their lawyer suggested in court that by June 2010 the couple had exhausted their patience with Sarmiento and had booked a ticket for her return to the Philippines.
But the day before that flight, the lawyer told the court, Sarmiento called police to the family home and told Orr he'd be in as much trouble as her if authorities found out she was there illegally.
The jury also heard that days earlier Sarmiento had demanded $5,000 from Orr, who had already given her $8,300 for various expenses.
Sarmiento responded in court that the allegations were lies. The court also heard that in October 2011 she filed a civil suit against Orr and Huen and is suing them for damages.
Sarmiento is now here on a temporary resident permit. When asked if she planned to apply for permanent residence she replied, "Why not, if the government lets me ?"
The trial is scheduled to continue next week.