Late Fahim Saleh’s Ex Assistance Arrested As Suspect On His Death

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The former personal assistant of a young tech entrepreneur who was found decapitated and dismembered in his Manhattan apartment was arrested on Friday and charged with murder,  the police said.

The entrepreneur, Fahim Saleh, 33, was discovered dead on Tuesday afternoon by his cousin inside his $2.25 million condo in a luxury building on the Lower East Side, the police said. The cousin had gone to check in on him after not hearing from him for about a day.

Mr. Saleh’s head and limbs had been removed, and parts of his body had been placed in large plastic bags designed for construction debris. An electric saw was still plugged in nearby.

The former assistant, Tyrese Devon Haspil, 21, had worked for Mr. Saleh since he was 16, officials with knowledge of the investigation said.

“Mr. Haspil was Mr. Saleh’s executive assistant and handled his finances and personal matters, and it is also believed that he owed the victim a significant amount of money,” the chief of detectives, Rodney K. Harrison, said at a brief news conference on Friday afternoon.

Detectives believe that the motive for the killing stemmed from Mr. Saleh having discovered that Mr. Haspil had stolen roughly $90,000 from him, two officials familiar with the investigation said. 

Mr. Saleh fired Mr. Haspil, but did not report the theft and even offered to set up what amounted to a repayment plan so he could return the money, the officials said.

One of the officials said Mr. Saleh had paid Mr. Haspil so well that he had been able to pay off the debts of several family members.

Mr. Haspil was arrested on Friday at 8:45 a.m. in the lobby of an apartment building on Crosby Street in SoHo, where he had been staying with a female friend, the official said. New York detectives and federal agents from a U.S. Marshals Service regional fugitive task force took him into custody.

Investigators have concluded that Mr. Saleh was killed on Monday afternoon, the day before his body was found, a fourth official with knowledge of the investigation said.

After the murder, the killer used a credit card to pay for a car to a Home Depot, on West 23rd Street in Manhattan, and to buy cleaning supplies, the fourth official said. He  returned to Mr. Saleh’s apartment the next day to dismember the body and clean up the crime scene.

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