A young Haitian woman, speaking slowly with tears running down her cheeks, described her life as a ''slave'' — thinking that suicide was the only way to escape the Haitian family in South Florida that had held her against her will for six years.
The audience listening to her horror story: 12 federal jurors in a Fort Lauderdale courtroom, where Simone Celestin, 23, testified Wednesday at length about her experience in a Kendall home.
''I thought about drinking motor oil or bleach. I decided not to drink the bleach. I chose motor oil,'' she told the jurors in describing her feelings of despair in November 2004 after being beaten for not making a bed for the family.
Celestin's testimony came on the third day of the trial of a Southwest Miami-Dade family — Evelyn Theodore and her two grown daughters, Maude Paulin and Claire Telasco — charged with human trafficking and forced labor. If convicted, each defendant could be imprisoned up to 20 years.
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