KATY - The Katy couple accused of enslaving their nanny were both released Tuesday on a $5,000 bond each.
The two were arrested on Friday, and appeared in federal court downtown.
56-year-old Chudy Nsobundu's and his 50-year-old wife Sandra, are accused of forcing their nanny to work for free for two years, and abusing her in the process.
“In this case in particular, she was promised $100 that she would receive on a monthly basis, and actually she was enslaved and not given food to eat,” said Timeka Walker, the Executive Director of Operations for United Against Human Trafficking.
The 38-year-old Nigerian nanny filed a criminal complaint that accused Chudy and Sandra Nsobundu of making her sleep on the floor, forbidding her to use hot water to bathe, and only permitting her to eat leftovers.
“One of the more pervasive forms of labor trafficking in our city is domestic servitude,” said Walker. “A nanny, a maid, someone you know who is living right next door to you, who think is there of their own free will, who are actually being forced to do the work that they are doing.”
Walked said labor trafficking in Houston is just as prevalent as sex trafficking. “It’s definitely pervasive here in our city and also across the country and internationally.”
The most recent case involves the Nsobundu’s, who had separate hearings in federal court on Tuesday. Each were given a $5,000 bond because at this time, no evidence has been turned in regarding the case.
Prosecutor Ruben Perez agreed with the judge's overall decision, but initially challenged her saying he feared that the Nsobundu’s could flee the country where they have dual citizenship in Nigeria.
The couple was told to surrender their passports and not to discuss the case with each other or witnesses who may be involved.
At this time, Sandra Nsobundu is working with an attorney, while Chudy Nsobundu has until Friday to find one.
The pretrial will set once both are represented.
The Nsobundu's are facing a number of federal charges including forced labor, using physical abuse and threats, making false statements on a passport application, and shielding from protection a non-citizen.