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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 August 2007, 08:15 GMT 09:15 UK
Maids: The Untold Story
First broadcast July 2007

A hand holding a cloth

Women who go to work overseas as maids often encounter unforeseen terror and tragedy. Judith Kampfner investigates.

Round-the-clock confinement, crippling illness, rape, escape, suicide and murder. These are some of the experiences facing women who go to work overseas as maids.

These women usually work to send money to families back home and their earnings contribute substantially to their own nation's economy.

Often they feel unprotected by their own embassies.

Even if the host country offers a measure of protection from unscrupulous employers, these laws are not always enforced and the maid can end up abused and abandoned.

Part One - Unforeseen Terror and Tragedy

In the first episode of this two-part series, Judith Kampfner begins her investigation with the account of a real incident which has haunted her.

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