Pakistan’s Supreme Court has taken custody of a 10-year-old girl who is at the center of a scandalous abuse case that has cast a spotlight on the problem of child labor.
The court on January 11 also ordered DNA testing to confirm the girl’s parents. No one involved in the case has been identified by name.
The case made headlines earlier in the month when photographs were posted online showing the girl with bruises and burns.
Her parents had allegedly hired her out for money to an influential local judge and his wife to work as a live-in maid.
The girl’s father testified in court that he had "forgiven" his daughter’s alleged abusers in exchange for financial compensation.
The girl has reportedly given conflicting accounts of her injuries, claiming alternately that the judge’s wife beat and burned her on a stove and that she herself fell down stairs and burned both her hands by accident.
According to Human Rights Watch, about 13 percent of all Pakistani children aged between 10 and 14 are working.
Based on reporting by AFP and AP