[symple_googlemap title=”” location=”23000 block of Valencia Boulevard, Santa Clarita, CA” height=”300″ zoom=”13″]
A Santa Clarita restaurateur was arrested for allegedly forcing a cook to work without pay for three years and physically abusing him, sheriff’s officials said Wednesday.
Pardeep Kumar, 47, of Newhall, was taken into custody at 4:28 p.m. Tuesday at his eatery in the 23300 block of Valencia Boulevard after authorities received a tip that the cook was being forced to work against his will, said Deputy Joshua Dubin of the Santa Clarita Sheriff’s Station.
Dubin said the employee, who was not identified, regularly worked 12 to 14 hours a day, seven days a week, and alleges that he was physically assaulted by the owner whenever he made mistakes.
He also claimed he was forced to live at the restaurant owner’s home and was driven to and from work and was not allowed to communicate with anyone in the outside world, Dubin said.
The sheriff’s department was tipped to the situation by the victim’s brother, who sent an email from Mumbai, India, officials said.
Sheriff’s deputies from the Major Crimes Bureau and the Human Trafficking Task Force, including federal authorities, made the arrest.
Kumar was booked at the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station on suspicion of mayhem, assault with a deadly weapon, involuntarily servitude and human trafficking, with bail set at $100,000.
— City News Service