Saudi sisters found dead in Hudson River were alive when they entered

Police release recent photos of Saudi sisters found dead in NYC river

The NYPD is investigating the mysterious deaths of two Saudi Arabian sisters whose bound bodies washed up in New York City last week after arriving from Fairfax, Virginia, on September 1.

Two immigrant sisters from Saudi Arabia whose bodies washed up on the New York City waterfront, bound together with duct tape, had told people that they would rather harm themselves than go back to their home country, investigators said Friday.

Media reports claimed that relatives of the dead girls told police that a Saudi embassy official had telephoned them on August 23 ordering them to return to Saudi Arabia.

Investigators tracked the girls' last movements using credit card records, which showed that they had "maxed out" a card staying in a number of "high end" hotels in NY, where they ordered meals for two people every day in the days leading to their deaths.

An eyewitness told detectives that on October 24 around 7 a.m. EDT (1100 GMT) he saw two women kneeling about 30 feet (9 meters) apart near the Hudson River praying loudly for about 15 minutes.

The two bodies were found on Wednesday at around 3:00pm by a passer-by who informed the police.

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Cops release first photos of Saudi sisters found duct-taped together
They said there was no reason to think the sister was abducted or in danger, which is why no images were released to the public. The lack of obvious trauma appeared to rule out a theory they may have jumped into the river from the George Washington Bridge.

Shea said officers are basing their investigation on the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of the girls from the family home in the past.

The two young women moved to NY two months before they died, where they stayed in five-star hotels and spent their time shopping. "It is entirely credible that the girls entered the water alive". Medical examiners have not decided the cause of death.

A post on the center's website - which appears to have been taken down - noted that Tala might have been with Rotana. By the time of their deaths, Rotana's credit card was maxed out.

"Details are still under investigation and will be shared in due course", she said.

Once they were identified, police sent detectives to Virginia to piece together the last months of their lives.

Rotana was formerly a student enrolled at George Mason University, according to school spokesman Michael Sandler. In December, they were placed in a shelter in Virginia after reporting that they had been physically abused by family members.

A Saudi official told CNN the girls' mother's immigration status had expired and that United States officials had asked her to leave the country. Their mother says that she received a threatening phone call from the Saudi embassy before the bodies were found. The Saudi embassy in Washington also extended its "support and aid in this trying time" to the sisters' family, the statement said.

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