Skip to main content

Minnesota woman pleads guilty to forced labor trafficking

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

A 59-year-old woman pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Mankato Tuesday to smuggling a woman into the country and forcing her to work at her son's restaurant for repayment, The Associated Press reports.

According to court documents, Tieu Tran recruited a woman from Vietnam to travel to the U.S. in 2008 using false promises of legal immigration status and a high-paying job. Instead, Tran, of Mankato, forced the woman to work long hours without paying her as promised, prosecutors said.

The Justice Department said victim was smuggled along with two other Vietnamese nationals across the U.S.-Mexico border by Tran, who "imposed a significant debt" on the woman, reported the Mankato Free Press. To repay the debt, Tran forced the woman to work at her son's restaurant, Pho Saigon, in Mankato.

The Justice Department said Tran "used manipulation of debts, isolation and verbal intimidation to hold the victim in fear, knowing that the victim was without legal status and money, did not have the ability to speak English, feared losing her family home in Vietnam to creditors and had nowhere else to turn for subsistence."

Prosecutors also said Tran "preyed on vulnerable victims and exploited them for her profit."

The Department of Justice said in a statement that Tran faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-11-25 at 6.44.11 PM

Lengthy standoff in Prior Lake ends late Friday night

The suspect allegedly assaulted an officer outside Kwik Trip, fled and broke into a home.

snow - 12-10-21 - Joe Nelson - 5

Accumulating snow possible in Twin Cities next week

The storm system could arrive in the Tuesday-Wednesday timeframe.

Target store snow

With Black Friday barely underway, Target reveals Cyber Monday deals

Plans for the two-day sale were revealed Friday morning.

Screen Shot 2022-11-25 at 9.37.25 AM

Man waves replica assault weapon at drivers in downtown Minneapolis

The alarming incident was spotted by the new MPD chief, Brian O'Hara.

Screen Shot 2022-11-25 at 9.29.58 AM

Extremely drunk driver arrested in Chaska

The driver was more than four times the legal limit.

Screen Shot 2022-11-25 at 8.21.21 AM

Stillwater police looking for suspect who stole vehicle with 1-year-old inside

The suspect abandoned the vehicle with the child still inside just 5 minutes after the theft.

Screen Shot 2022-11-23 at 5.01.34 PM

Suspected Bloomington restaurant killer arrested in Oklahoma

The 47-year-old Texas man was arrested around 12:30 a.m. Thursday.

Screen Shot 2022-11-24 at 9.16.39 AM

Minnetonka woman, 23, ID'd as victim killed in Minneapolis crash

The fatal crash happened near the Minneapolis Convention Center on Nov. 21.

canada-goose-g304751a8f_1280

More than 100 geese, ducks found dead on partially frozen MN lake

The discovery was made in Waseca at the weekend.

e-bike

After losing sponsor, advocates fear Minneapolis' Nice Ride could shut down

They are calling on the city to provide financial support till a new sponsor is found.

Screen Shot 2022-11-23 at 3.32.46 PM

Colleen Lindstrom announces departure from MyTalk radio show

Lindstrom's last broadcast on the long-running show will be Dec. 9.

Related