HUNDREDS of Thai maids are sexually abused in Hong Kong and elsewhere in the region but refuse to give up their jobs and return home, a Thai MP who recently visited the territory says. Tun Chintavej, chairman of a parliamentary committee on labour and social welfare, said many of the 3,000 Thai maids in the territory lived in deplorable conditions. 'We were informed by maids working in Hong Kong that many have been raped by their bosses but they do not want to file complaints or return home because they were still getting a good salary,' Mr Tun said in Bangkok. Mr Tun, who returned last week from a visit to Hong Kong to investigate the matter, alleged that many Thai maids were forced to sleep in their employers' kitchens and bathrooms where they were subject to sexual assault, including rape. Most of the Thai maids in Hong Kong were from the impoverished northeastern region and were willing to stay in Hong Kong despite frequent abuse, he said. There were also reports of Thai maids being sexually abused in Seoul but cases were few compared to Hong Kong. 'In Seoul many workers are being cheated by their employers but in Hong Kong they are working in fear of sexual abuse,' Mr Tun said. He was preparing a report for parliament to explore ways of helping abused workers abroad. A representative from a domestic workers' group in Hong Kong said she agreed with Mr Tun's findings. Remy Borlongan, who chairs the Association of Asian Domestic Helpers, said: 'Most Thai maids cannot speak English when they come to Hong Kong, unlike other nationalities like Filipinos, who speak English and have a university education. 'When their employer starts to give them less money [than originally agreed] they don't know how to file a complaint. 'They are forced to work illegally or are harassed, physically or sexually by their employer. 'They don't know where to go, what to do, since they cannot speak in English. 'Also, they can't speak Cantonese, which means these domestic helpers are more prone to abuse from employers,' Ms Borlongan said.