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'Double jeopardy' appeal begins for brothel madam

Watcharaporn Nantahkhum.

Watcharaporn Nantahkhum. Photo: Gary Schafer

A Kambah woman convicted of slavery has been double-punished, Canberra highest ranking court has heard.

Watcharaporn Nantahkhum, 45, last year became the first person convicted of a slavery offence in the ACT.

A Supreme Court jury found the brothel madam guilty of possessing a slave, attempting to pervert the course of justice and four offences under the federal Migration Act.

Those charges were allowing a non-citizen to work in breach of a visa condition, allowing a non-citizen to work after their visa expired, and the same charges with the aggravating feature of allowing the victim to work in conditions of exploitation.

Lawyers for Nantahkhum told the ACT Court of Appeal convicting their client for the migration breaches twice amounted to double jeopardy.

Justice Richard Refshauge jailed Nantahkhum for eight years and 10 months, to serve at least four years and nine months.

The appeal continues on Wednesday afternoon.

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