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(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) — The Ummah T&T Muslim Lobby Group is calling on Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith to “leave no stone unturned” in the investigations surrounding the brutal murder of national awardee Haseena Ali.
The call was made after a special forensic autopsy at the Forensic Science Centre in St James found Ali had been stabbed nine times before her Freeport house was set on fire to cover up the act by her attacker/s.
Ali was buried under Muslim rites at the Islamic Cemetery in Waterloo after Salat al-Janazah (Islamic Funeral prayer) was read at the Masjid Un Nur in Carapichaima.
Police investigators confirmed that Ali, 74, was murdered and they have several leads they were now feverishly pursuing. According to sources, investigators are focusing on two main suspects Ali hired to do power washing around the yard.
Police now believe robbery was the motive and that Ali fought against her attackers, which led in her demise. The suspects, police said yesterday, lit a stove burner in an attempt to burn the house down with her in it, in a bid to burn all evidence. However, police said a badly wounded Ali still attempted to escape before she succumbed to her injuries and died before the fire consumed most of her house.
Ali was the mother of a 37-year-old daughter and one of nine siblings.
Yesterday, Ummah T&T head Imtiaz Mohammed dared the T&T Police Service to expedite the case.
“In conveying its deepest condolences to the family of the deceased, Ummah T&T is calling on the authorities to quickly apprehend the suspects who committed this dastardly act,” Mohammed said.
“We are in shock and outrage at the vicious murder of Ali, who was a patriot and who devoted her entire life to public service in T&T.
“Ummah T&T views her brutal slaying as the amputation of a vital organ in the body politic of the Islamic community. The group is at a loss on how to react to this heinous crime which has robbed her family, the public service and the Islamic community of one of its most valuable assets.”
Mohammed added, “We urge Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith to leave no stone unturned in bringing the evil miscreants to justice.”
According to a police report, shortly around midday on Friday residents at Palm Drive reported seeing smoke coming from the upper floor of her split-level concrete house. A passerby ran into the house where he found Ali in a pool of blood.
Fire officers from the Couva Fire Station responded and were able to extinguish the blaze.
Ali was already dressed to attend Friday prayers (Jumu’ah) at the Masjid Un Nur in Carapichaima and her handbag and cellphone were in her vehicle, which neighbours were able to drive onto the roadway after seeing the house on fire.
Ali had a long and illustrious career in tax auditing, administration and policy and was awarded the Public Service Medal of Merit (Gold) for “outstanding and meritorious service in the public services” in 2012.
Investigations are continuing.