AP correspondent Margie Mason was reporting another story in Jakarta, Indonesia when her source asked why she wasn’t looking into the hundreds and hundreds of men enslaved in the Southeast Asian fishing industry.
She knew about this. It was an open secret. Men who had escaped or been rescued told their tales in Thailand. But no one knew how to nail it down so culpability could not be denied or how to make it relevant to fish-eating consumers in the U.S. “Other journalists had tried to do it and failed,” says Mason. “We were told we couldn’t do it. That we were going after the Holy Grail. Actually, that kind of helped.”