Accused FDH in Shatin yearns to see her children graduate

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Shatin Law Courts Building

Will she see children graduate this April?

A Filipino domestic worker was accused of theft by her employers in Shatin but they failed to show up during her trial on March 2.

The prosecutor told Shatin Deputy Magistrate Kay Chan Kwok-wai that the couple who accused defendant C. Pendel of stealing could not attend the trial because they had “house work” to do.

Defense lawyer Philip Ross said the judge could have had them arrested to force the couple to finish their testimony in court but the magistrate said he was not inclined to do so at that point.

The complaints had accused the Filipina of stealing a sweater and a photocopy of her employer’s ID card. She denied the accusation against her and insisted on her innocence.

With her employers absent during the hearing, the policeman who arrested Pendel instead took the witness stand.

The domestic worker asked the judge to rule on the case as soon as possible because her two children–one in elementary and the other in high school–in the Philippines were set to graduate next month.

Judge Chan said he would take that into consideration but added that this should not be taken as an indication as to how he would rule on the case.

Pendel’s employers eventually attended the succeeding hearing on March 6 and the case was again heard on March 20. Judge Chan is set to hand down his ruling on April 9. Pendel’s children will graduate the following day.

“It’s either she goes to prison or she flies home to see her chidren,” Mr. Ross said.

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