The owner of the Kitty-based Liquid Love bar, who was slapped with five charges, was today issued two concurrent sentences of ten and five years after she was found guilty of trafficking two female Venezuelan nationals.
Savita Persaud, 33, of Station Street, Kitty, was on trial before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts. At the conclusion of the trial today, the magistrate sentenced Persaud to serve 10 years for trafficking the underaged Venezuelan girl and five years for trafficking the Venezuelan woman. Persaud will, however, only serve 10 years behind bars since the sentences will run concurrently.
The magistrate also ordered Persaud to pay $2.3M to the child victim and $2.2M to the older woman.
The first two charges against Persaud alleged that, between January 31, 2019 and March 8, 2019 at Station Street, Kitty, she engaged in trafficking in persons by recruiting, transporting, and harbouring two Venezuelan women for the purpose of sexual exploitation.
She was also charged with two counts of unlawfully withholding the identification cards of the two Venezuelan nationals in aid of trafficking in persons.
The last charge against Persaud stated that during the same period, she employed a 17-year-old child on a property that sells intoxicating liquor.
Last month Persaud was found guilty of the latter three charges and was sentenced to 12 months for withholding immigration documents from two Venezuelan women and fined $100,000 for employing a 17-year-old child on a property that sells intoxicating liquor.
According to information, the businesswoman employed the Venezuelan nationals to work at her business place and she also rented them a place to live. However, when the women were unable to pay the rent, Persaud reportedly confiscated their travel documents and forced them into prostitution.
It was reported that the Venezuelan women would normally have to hand over the monies to the businesswoman, who promised to return their travel documents.
The women subsequently reported the matter to the police. An investigation was carried out and Persaud was arrested.
Editor’s note: a previous headline of this story had incorrectly stated the defendant was fined.