Ex-personal assistant arrested in tech CEO Fahim Saleh's grisly murder

LOWER EAST SIDE, Manhattan (WABC) -- The NYPD has arrested a former personal assistant of Fahim Saleh, the tech entrepreneur who was found decapitated and dismembered in his Lower East Side apartment, according to police sources.

Tyrese Devon Haspil, 21, who was arraigned and remanded, faces second-degree murder and other charges after Saleh's sister discovered the gruesome scene that included large plastic bags and an electric saw still plugged into the wall.

The motive, sources said, appeared to be a business dispute and the theft of tens of thousands of dollars.

The gruesome murder of the 33-year-old tech entrepreneur happened inside a luxury condo on the Lower East Side.

Saleh was found decapitated and dismembered on Tuesday. Authorities revealed on Thursday that Saleh also received stab wounds to the neck and torso, multiple incise wounds to the arm, multiple wounds to the left hand, contusion to the left forehead and two lesions on the back.

EMBED More News Videos

NYPD Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison addresses the media after a former personal assistant was arrested in the death of Fahim Saleh.



Saleh used a key fob to select his floor in the elevator Monday, but surveillance video shows a man wearing black and carrying a bag following him on and acting like he selected a different floor.
But when they arrived on the seventh floor, the man followed Saleh off, and possibly knocked him out with a taser.

RELATED | 1-year-old killed: Video shows suspects in deadly NYC shooting

Police say the murderer used a power saw to dismember the body -- an act that was possibly interrupted when Saleh's sister called up from the street, causing the suspect to flee down the fire stairs.

Friends previously described Saleh as a brash and innovative entrepreneur who started businesses in Nigeria and elsewhere in the developing world.

Detectives recovered text messages between Saleh and Haspil in which Saleh accused the suspect of stealing the money.

Sources say the suspect was tracked by his credit card, believed paid for by Saleh, which paid for the electric saw used after the murder.

Gokada released the following statement about their CEO:
"A leader, innovator and inspiration, Fahim's passion for Nigeria and its youth was immeasurable. He believed that technology could transform lives and improve safety and efficiency. He built Gokada to act upon these beliefs.

Under Fahim's leadership, Gokada has grown to become Nigeria's leading fully integrated delivery and logistics company, with outstanding growth and profitability metrics. Gokada has been built with a strong and resilient workforce that has navigated and transitioned through challenges, while keeping to its core values.

Gokada is committed to the well being of all of its employees, and believe it is important to take this time to support members of the team, as they pull through a devastating loss."


The next court date for Haspil is August 17.

Saleh's family released a statement Saturday:

Firstly, thank you for the words of love and support from all over the world for our dear Fahim. We hear them and they are providing us strength during this time.

We understand there is a desire to hear from us, but please understand our devastation and our desire to remain private about the most recent developments surrounding this tragedy.

We do, however, want to thank the NYPD and all members of law enforcement for their diligence and hard work in providing at least some peace for our family as we get ready to put our dear Fahim to rest.

Funeral arrangements for Fahim are underway and a private prayer and burial will be held this weekend. While some details were leaked unbeknownst to our family, we are asking for members of the media and the public to please respect our family and allow us this time to grieve quietly and privately with only those we have requested to be in attendance.

MORE CRIME NEWS: Video shows two women punched in Bronx restaurant
EMBED More News Videos

Disturbing video shows a male suspect throwing punches, hitting two women in the face.



----------
* Get Eyewitness News Delivered
* More Manhattan news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
* Follow us on YouTube
Copyright © 2020 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.