US State department employee owes $3.3 million to escaped sex slave

"A Virginia federal judge awarded $3.3 million to a Yemeni woman who was enslaved by a State Department employee and repeatedly raped by that worker's husband." Fortunately for the State Department employee, Linda Howard, she is still employed as an IT manager there, so she will be able to pay the bill off on no time. Here's the complaint.


    1. I think I figured it out, $3.3 million seems like an awful lot of money for a slave. Who has the money to buy one at those prices? I understand that supplies are low, but seriously, if I have to pay millions of dollars I’m never going to get my spouse a slave.
      End of satire.

      This is actually a very serious issue and the couple should probably be in jail. Also what is essentially slavery is alive and well on farms and in brothels across the first world. If we don’t take action to stop this now, more frightening actions will be taken later by others.

  1. They lured her to the compound with the promise of making $200 a month as a full-time maid? Christ, even their false promises make them sound like assholes.

      1. However “trafficking, forced labor, involuntary servitude, conspiracy, obstructing law enforcement and unjust enrichment.” may not actually be grounds for dismissal from the state department.

        1. This is grounds for promotion at State–they need all the apologists and morally flexible people they can muster, to explain away the conduct of totalitarian regimes we’re propping up or to excuse our own war criminal behavior.  

        2.  Not taking security seriously enough might be grounds.  “I’m afraid we’re going to have to let you go on account of your security practices being so lax, your slave escaped.”

      2. No, no, I never saw her. Honestly, I haven’t been in the dining room in several years, Your Honor. Or the kitchen. Or the living room. Or the bedrooms and bathrooms.

    1. Morality aside, she should lose her security clearance, which should bar her from working for the State Department.

    2.  Actually the only evidence in the news article of her continued employment is her Linked-In profile, a site which the user updates directly, so I wouldn’t take it as solid evidence she’s still employed there, unless there’s another source they’re not crediting

  2. There are days when I wonder if humans might not be better served by the Code of Hammurabi than any of our newfangled constitutional protections.

    This would be one of those days.

    1. Somehow I have a hunch that the rich and powerful still found ways to screw over everybody else back in Hammurabi’s time too.

        1. There is some poetic symmetry to that idea, but I really just wouldn’t feel comfortable with a justice system that employed a crack team of rapist-rapers.

    2. I’d settle for a return of the Nuremberg Codes. Seriously. We need to go back over everything that the Bush the Younger administration, the Obama administration, their agencies and their contractors have done and we need to apply the same legal standards we applied to the Germans and the Japanese after World War II, meting out the same sentences for the same crimes. There is no plausible moral grounds for us not to.

  3. Well, yeah, but it’s different when we do it, because we’re the good guys. Everybody understands that.

    As I was reminded by Dr. Maddow’s book, conduct like this was widely documented in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well, and in those cases judges and investigators made legalistic excuses for not prosecuting. Something has gone deeply rotten in our culture. Hopefully this verdict will be the beginning of a clean sweep of the rapists and slavers in our federal bureaucracy, in our military, and in our private military companies. If not? Then we’ll deserve everything that happens to us when the rest of the world realizes that we’ve become a rogue state, a threat to the whole human race.

  4. [Phil Hartman voice] Well, you have to understand, this comes at a very tense point in Americo-Yemenimanian relations. If the State Department were to fire everyone who kept Yemeni slaves, what kind of message would that send to Yemeni slaveholders? We wouldn’t want to inflame terrorist sentiments in the Middle East. Let’s let her keep her job, and continue to pursue our program of sloppily targeted robot assassinations.

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