This system developed from the practice of holding laborers in debt and forcing them to remain on the premises of their creditors to work off the debt. Peon laborers were thus bound to their masters' firms or plantations, often by means of violence and intimidation. The use of judicial corruption ensures enslaved mine labor in the DRC; in the same way the same method was used to coerce African-American workers in the American South in the period from 1870-1940. In the United States this systematic enslavement, for historical legal reasons, became known as the peonage system, and that tends to be the descriptor today when it is discovered in other countries. A member of law enforcement, a local official, or a member of a militia will arrest an individual. the arrest will have no basis in law and is simply a way of gaining control over a person in order to exploit their labor. The arrest will then be typically followed by one of three outcomes: the individual may simply be put straight to work as a prisoner under armed guard, there may be some type of fallacious trial or hearing in which the individual will be "sentenced" to work and again taken to the mines as a prisoner, or the arrested person will be "convicted" and then fined a significant sum of money.