Woman on trial for hitting maid's head and mouth with hammer, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Woman on trial for hitting maid's head and mouth with hammer

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Hammer blows to the head and mouth. Stabbed in the shoulder with a pair of scissors. Disfigured by a stone pestle.

These are just some of the horrific abuses that an Indonesian maid has accused her former employers of inflicting on her.

Ms Khanifah (below), 35, recounted to a court during the trial of her employer Zariah Mohd Ali, 54, on Monday (April 18) about how she was hit seven times on the head - including twice in the mouth - during the second half of her employment in 2012.


Zariah is facing 12 of 28 charges of maid abuse brought against her while her husband Mohamad Dahlan, 56, has been hit with one charge of hitting Ms Khanifah on the head with a frying pan cover at their HDB flat in Woodlands.

The Straits Times reported that Ms Khanifah said Zariah struck her on the back of her head with the blunt side of a hammer after accusing her of not cleaning the toilet properly.

Although Zariah's left hand was paralysed, Ms Khanifah said her employer used her right hand to strike her "very hard".

After she was struck the first time, Ms Khanifah tried to clean the wound and cover it with a small towel but to no avail. She said Zariah then gave her a sanitary pad to try and stop the bleeding but "the blood kept spilling out".

When she was asked by Deputy Public Prosecutor Sharmila Sripathy-Shanaz about the state of her scalp, she removed her tudung to show a large patch on the back of her head.

Ms Khanifah also recounted how her teeth were broken by Zariah.

While cleaning the outside of Zariah's room, Ms Khanifah was asked by her employer to bare her teeth before she was smashed with a hammer on the middle of her bottom lip, causing her gum to bleed and loosening two of her lower teeth.

Her bottom teeth were later knocked out by Zariah, who struck her amid a scolding as she cleaned the kitchen.

The blow broke parts of Ms Khanifah's upper teeth as well.

"It was very painful," she said.

Zariah also stands accused of forcefully bending Ms Khanifah's left little finger backwards and inflicting permanent joint damage to it, splashing her eyes with detergent and bashing her head with a stone mortar.

Ms Khanifah was sent home by her employers without her agent's knowledge in December 2012 on the false pretext that her daughter had died.

She discovered the deception only after she called her husband on her arrival at Bandung to find out that her daughter was well.

Lianhe Wanbao reported that for the three months leading up to her departure, Ms Khanifah was only paid just $20 a month instead of her full $400 salary.

Both Zariah and Dahlan (below) have pleaded not guilty.


Sources: Straits Times, Lianhe Wanbao

Domestic WorkerabuseCOURT & CRIMEUncategorised