Officials trying to identify enslaved disabled workers rescued from brick kiln
This 2009 photo shows a deserted brick kiln similar to the one where Chinese officials recently rescued illegally employed workers.
September 7th, 2011
01:36 PM ET

Officials trying to identify enslaved disabled workers rescued from brick kiln

Authorities in China are struggling to identify 30 people they rescued from illegal brick kilns where they were being enslaved and abused, state-run media reported Wednesday.

The officials are having a difficult time identifying some of the workers because at least 17 of them are disabled or have a mental illness, police told the state-run China Daily newspaper.

"Some of them can't even speak a whole sentence, and they don't act like normal people," Liu Weiming, deputy director of publicity in Zhumadian, where the workers were rescued, told the state-run paper. "Most are staying at a relief station because they can't remember where they are from."

The China Daily said that the scandal was exposed by the City Report TV channel who reported that workers were "abducted from streets and railway stations and then sold to bosses at brick kilns for 300 yuan to 500 yuan ($45 to $80)."

Bai Shasha, one of the rescued victims, said he and his father got lost in March and were abducted when several people with knives approached him. He said during the time he was enslaved at the kiln he was regularly beaten with bricks or whips, China Daily reported. Bai also said he and other workers were forced to work all day long without any rest, and then they all slept in cramped confines at night.

China Daily reported that Liu said two bosses and a supervisor were detained in relation to the case. One of the supervisors, age 14, is accused of beating workers with whips.

The incident is not the first in China. In 2007, 2009 and 2010 more than 1,500 people have been rescued from illegal brick kilns. An investigation in 2007 found that more than 53,000 workers at kilns were illegally employed, according to previous state-run media reports .

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Filed under: China • Crime
soundoff (169 Responses)
  1. MeoMio

    We don't get our bricks from China, do we? If so, maybe that's why I'm retarded. It's brick dust rubbing off.

    September 7, 2011 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Happy Gilmore

    I'm sure the owner of the brick kiln will promptly be executed by the central government to be made an example of, the cost of the bullet billed to the family, then the whole incident hushed up.

    September 7, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
  3. RUFFNUTT (kcmo resident and smoker of fine purple kush)

    atleast they have jobs!!!!.


    September 7, 2011 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Joker429

    There is no way the U.S. worker can compete with slave labor, and yes maybe in this story, they are physical slaves, but the cast majority of the rest of China are economic slaves, which seems to be exactly what our government, and the huge multinational corporations whom own our government want.

    September 7, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Wayne

    I am from China and I am still living in China.
    The story is true, and the disabled people working there, they don't get paid! and they are not treated as human being!!
    Don't say they got a job!! Do you want such a job??!!

    We are all slaves of the China Government!! We want to be free!!
    We want to work for ourselves! NOT for the CCP!!!!

    September 8, 2011 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
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