August 11, 1995 |
The young Thai woman standing nervously by the bank of elevators on the 10th floor of the federal court building Thursday afternoon was hoping to get a glimpse of the defendants in a nearby courtroom, without getting too close. A wrong step could ruin her life. She too had been captive in that sweatshop of horrors in El Monte, until she and a companion scaled the complex's wall in a bold escape two years ago.
August 9, 1995 |
Two major retailers were drawn into a widening web of turmoil Tuesday in connection with an El Monte sweatshop where authorities found more than 70 Thai immigrants toiling in alleged prison-like conditions. State officials said they had subpoenaed Mervyn's department store and were set to subpoena Montgomery Ward to determine whether the chains can be held liable for laborers' back wages.
August 5, 1995 |
Apparel manufacturers that bought garments produced by Thai nationals who labored in debt servitude will be liable for millions of dollars in back wages owed those workers, as well as stiff fines, California Labor Commissioner Victoria Bradshaw said Friday. The alleged garment sweatshop in El Monte raided this week was not registered with the California Department of Industrial Relations.
August 5, 1995 |
El Monte is a city of fences. Spike-topped wrought-iron bars surround homes, condominium complexes and even the most ramshackle apartments. Chain-link fences can stretch six feet high around homes in residential neighborhoods, and barbed wire is a common sight on many commercial business in this town with active gangs and a small police force.
August 4, 1995 |
Once a year, at a New Year's celebration, they would be released from the compound in El Monte. Loaded into the backs of trucks that were normally used to haul fabric, they would be transported to a garment shop in Downtown Los Angeles for a New Year's party. After celebrating whatever they could find to celebrate, they were trucked back to El Monte.
August 3, 1995 |
State and federal agents raided a garment factory in El Monte early Wednesday that allegedly held dozens of Thai immigrants in virtual slavery behind barbed wire for years, forcing them to labor in servitude to supposedly pay off creditors. The pre-dawn raid by a multi-agency team headed by the California Department of Industrial Relations discovered more than 60 Thai nationals living and working at a gated apartment complex ringed with barbed wire and spiked fences.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 27, 1993 |
On a vacant stretch of land just off the San Diego Freeway in Hawthorne, a developer and city officials envision a project that could help alleviate the South Bay's economic woes. It is called Fashion City, a $150-million complex that would house one of the nation's largest concentrations of garment wholesalers under one roof.
September 28, 1990 |
Trading a wardrobe for an on-screen television credit is a game of chance. Not just for producers and hosts of talk shows, game shows and feature news shows, but for the fashion retailers who agree to supply clothes without cash payment. But many retailers say they are more than willing to play, for just one reason. If they guess right and the show makes it big, they just might win the jackpot.
August 11, 1990 |
A bill aimed at cracking down on the latest proliferation of garment sweatshops in the Orange and Los Angeles counties is heading to Gov. George Deukmejian's desk. The International Ladies' Garment Workers Union announced Friday that it would stage a rally in the Los Angeles garment district next week calling on the governor to approve the bill. On Thursday, the Senate approved the bill 21 to 12, the minimum required for passage.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 11, 1990 |
In a job market teeming with unemployed workers, the Immigration and Naturalization Service permitted a City of Commerce garment factory to import 16 workers from China this spring despite objections from federal labor officials, union leaders and U.S. consular representatives in China. Winnie Fashions, which imported the women under a temporary guest-worker section of federal immigration law, claimed that it could not find local workers skilled enough to sew Army shirts for a Pentagon contract.