Three men have been charged with kidnapping and burning their relative, a 19-year-old divorced woman, in a Bedouin town in southern Israel, according to state prosecutors. The accused reportedly believed the woman would shame the family by dating other men.
Hanan al-Bahiri went missing on May 3 after speaking on the phone to her mother on the way home in the town of Lakiya. Her mother, Dalal al-Bahiri, contacted the police, prompting a search. The woman indicated her suspicion of Hanan’s uncle and two other relatives, Haaretz reports.
The victim’s uncle, Younis al-Bahiri, 45, his son Muhammad, 25, along with Sager al-Bahiri, 25, were among six family members who were detained three weeks after Hanan al-Bahiri’s disappearance.
“The defendants kidnapped the deceased in order to murder her and caused the death of the deceased with premeditation, after they decided to kill her and killed her in cold blood, without any provocation preceding the act,” the Southern District’s prosecution said in its indictment, as quoted by Haaretz.
Hanan al-Bahiri was reportedly kidnapped and questioned on her divorce. The suspects then allegedly broke her neck and burned her body, burying the remains in Northern Negev.
Muhammed al-Bahiri helped police to locate the young woman’s remains, as the three allegedly buried the body near Younis al-Bahiri’s home, according to the Jerusalem Post.
The men are also said to have destroyed the victim’s sim card and broken her phone so it wouldn’t be traced.
Shortly before her death, Hanan al-Bahiri had divorced a disabled man whom she had married at the arrangement of one of the accused uncles, Haaretz reports, citing the woman’s mother.
Hanan also had a phone conversation with her uncle, who told her to “sit at home with [her] mother, rot and shut up,” as the indictment read. “If I find out you’re leaving the house, you know what will happen to you,” the man threatened, according to Israeli media.