Pictures of Uber Driver Accused of Rebecca Dykes Murder Emerge As Family Launches Foundation

Pictures of the suspect behind the killing of a British diplomat in Lebanon have emerged, according to reports.

Rebecca Dykes, 30, was found strangled near a highway outside Lebanon's capital Beirut on December 17. She was found with string tied around her neck.

A man thought to be behind the murder was arrested the next day after being tracked down through security cameras. The suspect, identified in the media as Tarek Houchiye, or Tarek Hawchieh, later admitted to strangling her to death.The man was initially thought to be 35, but reports now refer to him as a 29-year-old man.

Authorities said the suspect, who worked for ride-hailing company Uber, had a previous criminal record. The man, known as "Hesso", tried to falsify his identity documents in order to work as a taxi driver, according to the Sun.

"It is well known that he had a criminal past and convictions," an official said. "However it appears he has either bribed someone to wipe his record and provide this document. Or indeed the document is a fake."

Uber said it was aware of the documents, but that it was up to the Lebanese government to carry out background checks and grant licenses.

A spokesman said: 'All drivers that use the Uber app in Lebanon are fully licensed by the government and must have a clear judicial record."

Newsweek was not able to verify whether the pictures circulated on the media and linked to a Facebook account belonging to Tarek Hawchieh are those of the suspect.

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'Rape'

Dykes, who worked at the British embassy, had spent Friday (December 15) evening at a bar in the capital's Gemmayzeh neighborhood.

She was last seen alive around 11 pm, when she left her group of friends to return home.

Dykes left with another friend, but then the two women separated to go to their respective apartments.

Some reports have claimed the suspect tried to rape Dykes before she was killed. It is believed the man targeted his victim because she "wore a miniskirt".

"He said he found her pretty, wearing a short skirt...and so he decided to rape her as it would be easy as she was a foreigner," an unnamed source was quoted by the Mail Online as saying.

The suspect's mother said she was frustrated due to what happened and her son belonged behind bars if he was found guilty.

"I am both frustrated and depressed about what happened. If this is really his fault then he should stay in jail and remain there," she said.

Dozens of people gathered outside Beirut's national museum on December 23 to hold a vigil for Dykes and three other three Arab women murdered in the past week in Lebanon, Reuters reported.

Women's rights activists said they held the event to commemorate the victims, shed light on violence against women and demand better laws.

Foundation

Dykes was working in Beirut as a programme and policy manager for the Department for International Development. Following her death, her family launched a charity foundation to support her humanitarian work.

"In the time since Becky's death we have been overwhelmed by the messages of support we have received from those who encountered her during her life," the family said in a statement, according to the Press Association.

"Becky dedicated her career to humanitarian causes, and worked tirelessly to make the world a kinder, fairer, safer and more stable place. We want to ensure that this work continues in her name."

The family created a Just Giving page to raise £100,000 for the foundation, which " will have the aim of continuing Rebecca's humanitarian and stabilisation work for refugees and other vulnerable communities, with a particular focus on women's empowerment and preventing violence against women," Dyke's family said.