When the body of slain 29-year-old Filipina domestic helper Joanna Demafelis was discovered inside a freezer at the apartment in Kuwait where she used to work in, there were indications that she had been placed there alive; although it was possible she died mainly due to the injuries she sustained.
Angry Filipinos called for the immediate arrest of her former employers who were tagged as the primary suspects to the murder; however, Lebanese national Nader Essam Assaf and his Syrian wife Mona Hassoun had long been gone from Kuwait after fleeing from check fraud charges the previous year.
A Lebanese judicial official revealed that the couple left Kuwait last year, made a brief stopover in Lebanon, before heading to Syria.
But there were conflicting reports whether the two were arrested together or at their respective home countries.
According to ABS-CBN News, the Lebanese judicial official said, “The couple were arrested in Damascus. They were the subject of an Interpol red notice and the Syrian authorities handed the husband over to Lebanese custody on Friday morning.”
In other reports, however, the husband had been arrested in Lebanon. He supposedly confessed to putting the OFW still alive in the freezer because he panicked upon seeing she was unconscious due to the beatings she sustained from his wife.
According to Bombo Radyo Iloilo, the man said his wife is no longer in Lebanon but somewhere in Syria but he has no idea about her whereabouts.
While reports on whether they were arrested together were conflicting, what’s important now is that they are both in the custody of the authorities. Interpol officials from both countries are now coordinating with Kuwaiti officials to get these two extradited to Kuwait to face their charges.
If proven guilty, the two will face death penalty which would most likely be done by hanging.