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39 Runaway housemaids arrested from one flat

Sharjah: Sharjah Police have arrested 39 housemaids who escaped from their sponsors and stayed in an apartment in Sharjah.

The housemaids lived in an apartment in a building on Jamal Abdul Nasser street.

Housemaids absconded because they believed they could earn more working on an hourly basis

The women are mostly Indonesian and Filipinas.

One of the women arrested by police included a runaway housemaid who gave birth but was not married.

Colonel Ebrahim Al Ajel, Head of Sharjah Investigations and Criminal Department, said they were able to nab the women during a raid at 1am after a tip-off.

According to Col Al Ajel, the housemaids absconded because they believed that they could work on an hourly basis and earn more money.

The latest arrest is the harbinger of more campaigns, he said, that will continue to pursue absconding housemaids, violators and infiltrators, in addition to whoever accommodates them, and refer them to the law.

Col Al Ajel has warned all residents against hiring part-time housemaids due to the possibility of theft and other crimes that could be committed by them.

Many housemaids drop leaflets in apartments or villas that contain their contact numbers but people should refrain from employing them.

Most of the problems with housemaids involve absconding in general and thefts by part-time maids.

“These [part-time] maids are usually not on the sponsorship of the family and so when they do anything illegal, it is difficult to trace them as the employers know nothing about them,” said Col Ajel said.

Col Al Ajel brought to light the fact that neighbourhood grocery stores play a major role in abetting the crimes of housemaids and helping them abscond.

He urged the public to play an active role in bringing the culprits to book by assisting the police whenever they observe a suspicious activity or know of someone staying illegally in the country.

Col Al Ajel urged families and institutions to respect the residency laws and refrain from hiring illegal maids because they put themselves at risk of theft and other misdemeanours and could face legal action.

He also urged all families who want to sponsor a maid to thoroughly explain to the maid the nature of her job and ensure she is comfortable with what is expected of her to avoid problems and misunderstandings.

Public can report illegal residents to Sharjah Police on the toll-free number Najeed 800151 or 901.

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