New York City
Mysterious deaths: Two sisters from Saudi Arabia were found drowned in the Hudson River last week with their bodies bound together by duct tape, sparking worldwide speculation about their cause of death. Rotana Farea, 23, and Tala Farea, 16, had immigrated to Fairfax, Va., with family in 2015. They had recently spent time in a “shelter-like” facility where they went to escape domestic abuse. Sources told detectives that the sisters said they would rather “commit suicide than return to Saudi Arabia.” Police said the girls’ mother received a call from the Saudi Embassy notifying her that her daughters had sought asylum in the U.S. Saudi officials deny reports that they subsequently ordered the family to leave the U.S. Investigators believe the sisters spent a month in New York City, maxing out credit cards at hotels and restaurants, and were last seen praying in Manhattan’s Riverside Park.