Pathao co-founder Fahim Saleh’s executive assistant Tyrese Devon Haspil, who has been charged with murdering of the tech entrepreneur in a Manhattan apartment on 14 July, pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder, reports news agency UNB.
Sam Roberts and Neville Mitchell, Legal Aid Society attorneys with the Homicide Defense Task Force said that 21-year-old Haspil has no involvement in the grisly murder, reports CNN.
In a statement, they said, “We are in the very earliest stages of ferreting out the truth. The life of this case promises to be long and complex. As the attorneys for Haspil, we urge the public to keep an open mind.”
New York police on 17 July arrested the young man in connection with the murder.
Fahim Saleh, co-founder of Bangladeshi ride-sharing app Pathao also the CEO and founder of Gokada, a motorcycle ride-sharing app in Lagos, Nigeria, was found murdered in his luxurious condo in Manhattan of the city on 14 July when his sister went there looking for him.
Fahim had recently come to know that Haspil misappropriated tens of thousands of dollars from him. Although Fahim set up a repayment plan for him to return the money, it didn’t work out, an official told the NY Times.
Police now suspect the motive for the killing may have originated from those circumstances.
Meanwhile, the investigators discovered that Fahim was killed on 13 July and the killer came back to the apartment on the following day to dismember the body and remove evidence.
Fahim was regarded as a rising star in the tech world. Friends called the young investor the “Elon Musk of the developing world”.
Roughly two years after co-founding Pathao, Fahim co-founded Gokada in Lagos, Nigeria in December 2017, and took over as its CEO in April of last year. Most recently, he oversaw Gokada’s transition to delivery service during the coronavirus pandemic.
He also launched the venture capital firm Adventure Capital in New York in 2018.