As one commenter wrote, “If they didnt want their family to know they had run away to shelter, i suspect it is the family who is behind their deaths.” Also known as honor killing.
Police have released the first photographs of Saudi Arabian sisters who were found drowned and duct taped together in the Hudson River last week in a plea for information about their mysterious lives and murky deaths.
Tala Farea, 16, and Rotana Farea, 22, were found washed up on October 24. The sisters were living together in New York City where Rotana was studying Computer and Information Technology after recently dropping out of George Mason University in Virginia.
Their parents, Wafa’a and Abdulsalam, live in Virginia with their brothers who are 18 and 11. Abdulsalam often traveled back to Saudi Arabia for work but no information about his job has emerged.
In August, the family reported 16-year-old Tala missing after she disappeared from Virginia but the search was called off when they learned she had gone to stay with her sister in New York City.
She had recently been awarded a spot at a top private school in Saudi Arabia with a full scholarship but was desperate not to go.
It was the second time they broke off from the family.
In December last year, the pair fled to a shelter in Fairfax. The family reported them both missing.
When officers tracked them down, the sisters begged them not to tell the family where they were. What led to them returning home remains a mystery but police are focusing their investigation on the circumstances surrounding it.
Despite their repeated attempts to live independently from their parents, the family was described as ‘happy’ by Arab media outlets and were the ‘apples of their father’s eye’.
The NYPD has not ruled anything out.
Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea said yesterday: ‘We are looking at all clues in their past life.’
The family in Virginia is yet to speak out about their disappearance despite DailyMail.com’s repeated attempts to contact their representative.
On October 23, the girls’ mother Wafa’a received a phone call from an official at the Saudi Arabian consulate who ordered the entire family to return to their home country. It was in response to an application by the two sisters for political asylum in the United States.
Police have ruled out that the pair jumped from the George Washington Bridge in a suicide pact, a theory that was initially pushed out by police, because neither body had visible signs of trauma.
[Sloppy reporting. Just a few sentences earlier it stated the NYPD had not ruled anything out.]
It is not known how long they were dead before they were found but police struggled to identify them for days.
Rotana dropped out of George Mason in May this year after two years of studies. George Mason, a public university with 35,000 students has close ties to Saudi Arabia.
The Saudi Arabia Cultural Mission has gifted the college $63 million and has paid for the education of 270 of its 370 Saudi students.
The sisters’ father has since arrived in New York following news of their death.
It remains unclear what he did for a living but he frequently traveled between the US and Saudi Arabia for work.
The family moved to Virginia in 2015. It is not known why this was where they chose to settle.
Because it’s a Muslim (jihadi) enclave with a lot of Saudi’s and Saudi money floating around?
Update – and check out the headline from the far-left Yahoo of all places: Saudi Sisters Found Dead & Duct Taped Together Were Likely Abused By Family
In a press conference Friday, the NYPD released details about the final months of Rotana and Tala Farea, the two Saudi sisters found dead on the shore of the Hudson River, duct taped together.
Chief of Detectives Dermot F. Shea said the girls’ family had not seen them since November 30, 2017. They were reported missing and then located near Fairfax, VA but at that time chose to go to a facility “due to abuse allegations” rather than return home. While at the facility, the women expressed that they would rather “inflict harm” upon themselves then return to Saudi Arabia. They also made allegations of abuse against against their mother, father, and brother.
In August of 2017 the Farea sisters went missing from the Virginia facility and slowly made their way to New York City. According to Uber records, they arrived in New York on September 1, where they stayed in high end hotels including the Knickerbocker and ordered meals, always two at a time. The purchases have been traced to a credit card in Rotana, the older sister’s, name. Around October of this year police believe the “money started to run out” as they reached the limit on their card.
On October 31, a man contacted the NYPD to report that he had information that was “haunting him.” The man, a frequent jogger along the Hudson, said that on the morning of October 24, he’d saw two women sitting about 30 feet apart in a playground near the water. He said they had their heads in their hands and could be heard praying. Police believe it is likely these women were the Farea sisters.
Detective Shea dismissed rumors that the woman had jumped from the George Washington Bridge as well as reports they had been bound in a “cross-like” formation. He said the duct tape was not “tight” but rather bound in a way to keep them together.
The sisters were captured on surveillance footage in good health as late as one week before the discovery of their bodies. Law enforcement is attempting to fill in the gaps of their final months. They have no credible evidence at this time that a crime was committed but confirmed the investigation is ongoing.
“It’s a tragedy all around,” said Detective Shea.