A Rockland County grand jury has indicted four members of a New City family on labor trafficking charges related to the use of intimidation, threats and physical violence to force a 20‐year‐old woman into a life of servitude and sexual abuse, according to Rockland District Attorney Thomas Zugibe.
The victim, now 22, is an Indian citizen who was brought to the U.S. through an arranged marriage with Vishal Jagota, 33, of 28 Butternut Drive, New City, in January 2008, Zugibe said. The 56-count indictment charges members of the Jagota family of a scheme to force the victim to work as a round‐the‐clock servant, performing a variety of household chores, cooking, child care and other tasks under threats of violence.
Zugibe said that when the victim threatened to contact authorities, the Jagotas vowed to concoct wild stories, accusing her of committing various types of crime.
“Victims in forced labor cases are vulnerable targets who are promised stable lives, but end up in abusive situations and deplorable conditions,” Zugibe said. “This office will continue its commitment to rescue victims of this form of modern‐day slavery and vigorously prosecute the individuals who exploit them.”
In addition to Vishal Jagota, charged are:
Aman Jagota, 61, of 28 Butternut Drive, New City.
Parveen Jagota, 57, of 28 Butternut Drive, New City.
Rajani Jagota, 30, of 28 Butternut Drive, New City.
They are all charged with three counts of Labor Trafficking in the Second Degree, class “D” felonies, and one count of Endangering the Welfare of a Child, a class “A” misdemeanor.
Aman Jagota is additionally charged with 50 counts of Forcible Touching, class “A” misdemeanors. Vishal Jagota is charged with one count of Assault in the Third Degree, a class “A” misdemeanor. And, Parveen Jagota and Rajani Jagota are charged with one count of Assault in the Second Degree, a class “D” felony
Aman Jagota is accused of regularly groping and fondling the victim and otherwise sexually assaulting her, according to the indictment.
Zugibe said that on one occasion, Parveen Jagota and Rajani Jagota are accused of burning the victims’ hand with a hot iron. On another occasion, Zugibe said Vishal Jagota is accused of biting the victim, causing scarring on her cheek.
The victim was forced to face her captors for nearly three years, from her arrival in Rockland County in 2008 until September 2010, Zugibe said.
The Jagotas were arraigned in Rockland County Court in New City before Judge William K. Nelson and a hearing was set for March 29.
Zugibe said labor trafficking carries a penalty of up to seven years in state prison.