A TANZANIAN-born man has denied luring a maid to come and work for his family in Birmingham and then exploiting her. Shafiq Shariff said that Zubeda Ali was “very happy” when she was in Birmingham after coming from his home country.
Shariff, 48, of Esme Road, Sparkhill, has denied trafficking a person for exploitation and assisting unlawful immigration. It is alleged Shariff, a father of three, employed Miss Ali with the promise of a well paid job in Europe. The offer included a salary of £100 per month, four weeks holiday and the role of cooking for the family and collecting the children from school, said Andrew Smith, prosecuting, at the city’s Crown Court.
He said Shariff and his wife were instrumental in obtaining a passport and a UK visa for Miss Ali in a false name and that when she arrived in Birmingham she was “forced to work like a donkey”. Mr Smith claimed she was never paid and was made to work seven days a week, sleeping in the same bedroom as the children.
Andrew Davidson, defending, asked Shariff: “Did Zubeda Ali appear happy or unhappy in the UK?” He replied: “She was very happy.”
“In arranging for Zubeda Ali to come to the UK did you intend in anyway to exploit her?” Mr Davidson asked.