Florida woman gets 7 years for forcing surrogate pregnancy

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP/WSVN) — A woman in Florida has been sentenced to seven years in federal prison for the forced labor of a Mexican woman she hired as a pregnancy surrogate.

Esthela Clark also faces deportation to Mexico after serving the sentence she received Thursday in federal court in Jacksonville.

Clark pleaded guilty last year. Federal prosecutors say she traveled to Mexico where she met the victim in 2012.

According to WJXT, Clark told the woman she was searching for someone to serve as a surrogate, and that the entire process would be medically supervised.

The victim agreed after being promised thousands of dollars once a baby was born.

The woman was smuggled into the United States, and after she arrived in Jacksonville, Clark repeatedly tried to inseminate her using syringes filled with sperm retrieved from her boyfriend’s condoms.

Clark performed the process three to four times a day in her own dining room, according to the WJXT report. Prosecutors say when that method failed, Clark forced the woman to have unprotected sex with strangers.

Among other things, the victim claims Clark also forced her to sleep in a puddle of bleach when she used too much bleach while cleaning, and was limited to a diet of beans, causing her to lose 65 pounds.

It is unclear if the victim ever became pregnant.

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