Arrest made in Saulīte murder, Irish police say

Police in Ireland have arrested a man in connection with the apparent murder-for-hire of the Latvian mother, Baiba Saulīte, who was gunned down Nov. 19 at her home north of Dublin.

The man, described only as in his 30s, was arrested the morning of Dec. 18 and was being held at the police station in Swords, the district where Saulīte lived. He can be held up to 36 hours without being charged.

Police on Dec. 5 arrested two men also in connection with their investigation of the murder, but the suspects were later released.

Saulīte died at her home after being shot three times while she and some acquaintances were visiting at her home. Her two sons, ages 3 and 5, were asleep in the house.

As their investigation developed, police learned the 28-year-old Latvian had feared for her safety. She had fought a custody battle with her estranged husband, a Lebanese named Hassan Hassan, who is serving time in an Irish jail for his involvement in an automobile theft scheme. Hassan also has been sentenced to two years imprisonment for abducting their sons in 2004 and arranging to take them to Syria to be with his family.

In addition, Saulīte’s solicitor had received threats, according to police.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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