A former restaurant owner forced an employee to work for him for five years without pay.
A US court in North Carolina has now sentenced 56-year-old Bobby Paul Edwards to pay the mentally disabled John Christopher Smith twice the original salary - a total of $ 546,000.
Edwards, who is white, has already been sentenced to ten years in prison after pleading guilty of slave labor in 2019.
The acts occurred from 2009 to 2014. Smith had to work more than 100 hours a week.
According to The Post and Curier, African American Smith had worked in the restaurant for 31 years - allegedly since he was twelve.
Edwards would also have whipped his victim with a belt and burned him on the neck with hot metal tongs.
"I wanted to leave this place so badly"
The judge concluded that Edwards had "enslaved" his employee.
During that time, according to a Washington Post report, he kept Smith in a cockroach-infested apartment he owned.
Smith's lawyers described them as "inhuman" and "harmful".
"Most of the time, I felt insecure, like Bobby could kill me if he wanted," Smith said, according to court records.
"I wanted so badly to leave this place, but I didn't know how without getting hurt."
Colleagues in the restaurant who saw the abuse did not intervene - for fear of Edwards.
Smith's suffering finally ended in 2014 after a relative of a restaurant employee notified authorities of the offense.