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UK’s Wealthiest Family, The Hinduja’s Face Jail Term In Switzerland

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The Hinduja family, the richest in the UK, are facing possible four-year jail sentences for mistreating their Indian workers at their villa in Geneva. A Swiss judge found four family members guilty of illegal employment, a decision they are now contesting in a higher court.

Billionaire Hinduja Family Faces Human Trafficking Charges In Swiss Court:  5 Shocking Revelations

Source: NDTV

Full Story:

The Hindujas, whose fortunes are estimated to be around $47 billion, run businesses ranging from oil and gas to banking and healthcare in as many as 38 countries.

On Friday, the court labeled the Hindujas as “selfish” after prosecutors accused them of treating their staff inhumanely. These employees were brought from India to work as domestic help at the family’s mansion.

Prakash Hinduja and his wife Kamal received sentences of four years and six months, while their son Ajay and his wife Namrata were each given four-year sentences. However, the court acquitted them of the more serious charge of human trafficking.

Who are Hindujas? Why were they sentenced to jail? | Explained - Hindustan  Times

Source: Hindustan Times

The court was also told that the family spent more on their dog than on their servants. They spent about 8,584 Swiss francs (Rs 8 lakh) annually on their dog, while some of their staff worked up to 18 hours a day, seven days a week, for just 7 Swiss francs (Rs 660) per day, according to Swiss prosecutor Yves Bertossa.

The Hindujas denied these allegations, claiming that their employees could leave the villa freely and received ample benefits. The defense argued that the staff was “grateful” to the Hindujas for “offering them a better life.”

In a statement, the family said they were “appalled” by the verdict and have appealed to a higher court.

The Hindujas had earlier reached an out-of-court settlement with the three employees who had made the accusations against them, but the prosecution went ahead with it due to the gravity of the charges.

Prakash and Kamal Hinduja, both in their 70s, did not attend the court due to health reasons. Ajay and Namrata had attended the trial but were not present on Friday to hear the verdict.

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