Warning: Graphic photos contained below.
A 22-year-old woman named Zunduri was held captive by a Mexican family for two years. She was chained to a desk by her neck and forced to iron clothes for the family’s business 12 hours per day. She survived despite brutal beatings and just one small meal a day. Doctors say that Zunduri’s abuse has caused her body to appear more similar to an 81-year-old woman than that of a 22-year-old.
CNN Hit reports that Zunduri began working for a family that operated a small dry cleaning business in southern Mexico City. Initially, she was paid wages for her time at work and given a room in the family’s home. However, after the family accused her of theft, they held the young woman against her will and began to torture her daily. Zunduri says that she was chained to a desk by her neck for 12 hours a day while she was forced to iron clothes for the dry cleaning business. If she stopped ironing or attempted to free herself from the chains, members of the family would beat her.
In addition to the constant beatings, Zunduri says that she was only fed one meal a day and was often famished and hungry. She claims that some days she was so hungry that she would eat the plastic wrapping from the clothing she was ironing to feel full. According to the Daily Mail, Zunduri was able to make an escape when, one morning, the family members did not secure her properly. She fled the building and went to police.
Police say that the injuries present on Zunduri back up her claims of abuse. It was noted that she was often beaten with a wrench, a tie and other instruments, causing her multiple wounds over her entire body. Her back was also burned with an iron and is heavily scarred.
The brave woman says that she wants her captors to be held accountable for what they did to her but that she is not releasing her real name because she wants to start anew.
“I was tortured. There is no part on my body without scars. I want them to pay for every tear, every pain, every blow for everything I have had to suffer. My life plan is to live. I want to be a pastry chef, I want to live, I want to recover all the years I have lost. I don’t want the world to know my name, just call me Zunduri, it’s Japanese. A friend of mine is named like that. It means beautiful girl.”
Police have arrested five people on suspicion of holding Zunduri against her will. If convicted, each individual could face up to 40 years in prison.
[Image Credit: Mugshots for five suspects]