Meshael Alayban: Saudi princess facing human trafficking charge in California
Courtney Friel, KTLA, CNN
11:37 AM, Jul 11, 2013
8:29 PM, Jul 11, 2013
20 Gramercy Place is where Irvine police say Meshael Alayban was living with her Saudi prince husband.
Now she's behind bars and facing one count of human trafficking for allegedly forcing a 30-year-old Kenyan women to be a domestic slave.
"She was working seven days a week. Day and night. Sixteen hours a day. Not free to leave. Having to do whatever work they told her to do and it was like washing dishes, taking care of kids," said Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas.
The alleged victim started working with the royal family in Saudi Arabia a few years ago. After they brought her to the US the couple refused to give her passport back. But Tuesday afternoon the victim somehow escaped.
"She waved a bus down. She got on the bus and she started asking for police and saying that she believed that she was a victim of human trafficking," Rackauckas said.
When the Irvine police department searched the home they found more victims. "We learned that there were other ladies also in the residency. There were four others," Rackauckas said.
Neighbors said they saw four Filipino women taking care of the couple's three children.
Rackauckas says those women are now happy to be free and in the protected care of the Salvation Army.
This means more charges could come for Meshael Alayban who is the first person to be prosecuted under proposition 35 which California voters passed in 2012 to increase the penalty for human trafficking.
"This is the United States of America and we will enforce the law. And we'll protect those people so if they are in that circumstance we would like to see them come forward," Rackauckas said.