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Thu 4 Dec 2014 03:54 PM

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Arrest made over Abu Dhabi shopping mall murder

Announcement comes as US victim is named as Ibolya Ryan who had been teaching in the UAE since summer 2013

Arrest made over Abu Dhabi shopping mall murder

Police in Abu Dhabi on Thursday arrested the suspected killer of an American woman stabbed to death in a mall on the city’s Reem Island.

UAE’s Minister of Interior and Deputy Prime Minister, Sheikh Saif, told a press conference that police arrested an Emirati woman on suspicion of stabbing the American woman, named in US media as Ibolya Ryan, is now in custody.

In a follow up to CCTV footage released yesterday, Sheikh Saif also showed video footage of the suspect fleeing the scene of the crime at Boutik Mall, showing her hiding the number plate of her car with a UAE flag.

A video has since been published on the Abu Dhabi Police’s YouTube account, detailing the aspects about the case through subtitles in Arabic.

It has since emerged that the woman is also a suspect in a plot to plant a bomb in front of an American resident.

Sheikh Saif described the case as “an unprecedented heinous crime in the UAE”.

He added: "We stand today before a crime that is alien to our secure country- a crime that has disregarded all human values and norms and targeted innocent people."

He said that the suspect targeted her victims based on nationality alone and had nothing to do with personal issues.

"She aimed to create chaos, shake the security in the country, and terrorise people in the UAE. These intentions have put the government on the highest levels of alert."

Reports in the United States earlier on Thursday named the teacher killed in the incident as Ibolya Ryan.

A teacher recruitment company that found a job for the American woman killed in a knife attack on Monday released her name.

Association Press said Ibolya Ryan was in the UAE teaching kindergarten, citing comments attributed to Footprints Recruiting co-founder and CEO Ben Glickman.

The 47-year-old started working in the UAE during the summer of 2013 and Glickman said Ryan had expressed interest in renewing her contract with Abu Dhabi Education Counciil (ADEC) or finding other work in the country.

Accompanying her photo on the Footprints website, Ryan was quoted as saying: “I like the fact that I am working for ADEC and not for a private school not just because ADEC seems to be a great organisation but also I am part of this great reform they are doing for the future generations. Thanks for all your work and help! I am happy I went through Footprints."

Glickman also confirmed that Ryan was licensed as a teacher in Colorado.

Footprints Recruiting called the killing a "senseless tragedy", adding that it It still considered the UAE and Abu Dhabi to be a safe environment for teachers to relocate.

On Wednesday, Abu Dhabi police released a 2 minute 30 second video, posted by police on YouTube, showing a suspect entering Boutique Mall in Reem Island on Monday.

It shows the suspect, who is hidden under an abaya, black gloves and face cover (Niqab), entering the mall and leaving more than an hour and a half later.

The video comprises footage taken from security cameras in a basement car park and ground floor lobby.

The suspect was dubbed in a police statement as the Reem Island Ghost.

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Prohit 5 years ago

Sad....what else we can say except this that senseless things happen all across the globe.

It has nothing to do with a particular region or place.

Undoubtedly UAE is still a safe haven for expats.

May the soul of deceased rest in peace.


GCC 5 years ago

Salute to Abu Dhabi police.

Ahmed Abdullah 5 years ago

All the condolence to Ibolya's family. Whoever did this, a man/woman under the Abaya, will not escape the punishment in life or the day of resurrection.

Fuad 5 years ago

I am really amazed by the UAE Interior Police, they are awesome and very smart in detecting and find culprits behind any scene. Good Job and keep it up! You are better than the western and African Countries. Really!! Congrats.

Muhammed Rafi 5 years ago

I Appreciated Abu Dhabi Police

Sal 5 years ago

Sad and sorry for the teacher and family. Brilliant job by AD police. Wish All police force should work like this.