Singapore court jails Indian-origin woman for assaulting maid

Limbaga cooked, cared for her employers' children and had no days off.

Singapore: A 20-year-old Indian-origin woman in Singapore was on Thursday jailed for a week for torturing her Filipina maid by slapping, hitting and punching her.

Vidya Jayasankarr committed one count of voluntarily causing hurt to the family's domestic helper Miezel Cagas Limbaga and was ordered to pay SGD 4,800 compensation.

Limbaga cooked, cared for her employers' children and had no days off.

She slapped 31-year-old Limbaga and grabbed her neck in late January last year, according to a report by The Straits Times.

The culprit and her husband, Janardana Jayasankarr, 52, had been charged with hurting the Filipina, who had been working for them since October 2014.

Both pleaded guilty earlier to have hit the maid when they were unhappy with her.

The husband, as employer, admitted to two counts of causing hurt to the maid while two other similar charges will be considered when he will be sentenced on February 19, 2016.

Court documents said that, on January 20 last year, the man grabbed Limbaga's T-shirt and dragged her to the master bedroom at night.

He was unhappy with her for opening the fridge and microwave earlier that day, and accused her of stealing food.

In the bedroom, the couple took turns to hit and scold the maid for all her previous wrongdoings.

The man slapped the maid on her face, punched her on her stomach and chest and his wife grabbed the helper's neck.

After scolding her for some time, the couple allowed her to return to her room. The man admitted to causing hurt to the maid on three other occasions in late November 2014 and in January 2015.

These beatings came to light when another Filipina saw bruises on Limbaga's face, chest area and arms and made a police report on January 22, 2015.

On further investigation, police officers went to the Jayasankarrs' home and Limbaga was sent to a hospital on the same day. She was found to have bruising on her scalp, cheeks, upper chest, back, sacral area and left hip.

The couple had since agreed to give the victim compensation of SGD 1,000, according to their lawyer Rajan Nair.

But the prosecution argued that this was insufficient and asked for compensation of SGD 4,800 for loss of earnings, as Limbaga had stopped working in January 2015 and was residing in the Philippine Embassy in the city-state.

While working for the couple Limbaga was paid SGD 400 a month.