Kin seek justice for maid found in Saudi morgue
The family of an overseas Filipino worker who was recently found in a morgue in Saudi Arabia after being reported kidnapped last year is appealing to the government for help in repatriating the body and obtaining justice.
“We want justice for Marilyn. It is very painful for us to accept this. We hope the government can help us,” Lani Dizon, sister of the late Marilyn Restor, said in a press briefing Friday at the Migrante International office in Quezon City.
Restor’s family confirmed the domestic helper’s death only in June this year when a hospital informed her former employers that her body had been in the morgue for 42 days, Dizon said.
Restor and her husband Arnulfo worked for a royal Saudi couple in Riyadh. The Restors have a young daughter who practically grew up in their employers’ household.
But in June 2014, Marilyn Restor was “abducted” by her employer’s daughter who wanted her to serve in the latter’s home instead, Dizon said.
The employers’ daughter, Princess Jada, had allegedly maltreated her previous helpers. When these helpers fled, Jada had Restor forcibly taken from her parents’ house. The Filipino maid was taking out the garbage on the day she was seized, Migrante secretary general Sol Pillas said.
Dizon presented documents showing that Jada’s parents had reported the abduction to the police. Quoting information reaching the royal couple, Dizon said her sister died allegedly after being “pushed from the rooftop of the princess’ three-story household.”
Reports reaching Migrante also showed that Arnulfo and the royal couple made an attempt to get Marilyn from Jada’s house but were met with gunfire coming from Jada’s husband, a ranking official in the Saudi military.
In August last year, Dizon went to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to seek assistance. “We told them who kidnapped Marilyn, we gave them the address, we were just asking for a rescue,” she recalled.
She returned to the DFA to follow up her request in March, this time assisted by Migrante. “They said they’re doing everything but they couldn’t even give an update, until we learned that my sister had died.”
“We are asking the DFA to provide us a copy of the autopsy report, forensic evidence and other documents needed in filing legal action. We also need to secure Marilyn’s husband Arnulfo and their youngest child. While the princess’ mother is kind, we can’t be sure that they won’t be in danger,” Pillas said.
Migrante also said two more Filipinos in Saudi Arabia—Dorothy Blancaflor and Levine Banayo Batague—are believed to be also in Princess Jada’s custody. With a report from Veronica Roque.
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