Heartbreaking New Details About Why Parents Threw Hot Cooking Oil On Their 16-Year-Old Daughter As Punishment

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16-year-old Girl Abused By Parents For Refusing An Arranged Marriage
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She ran away to avoid the marriage.

The parents of a 16-year-old girl are facing child abuse charges after police discovered they beat the teen for turning down an arranged marriage.

Maarib Al Hishmawi, 16, went missing Jan. 30 after she disagreed with a marriage arranged by her parents. She was last seen leaving Taft High School, which she attended.

"It became fairly obvious very early on that this wasn't a regular missing persons case," Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar said.

The teen was found mid-March and told Child Protective Services of the abuse she endured at the hands of her parents, My San Antonio reports

An unnamed organization took her under its wing while she was missing.

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Maarib’s father became upset with the investigation and suggested his daughter was kidnapped.

“Please, Maarib, if you’re still alive, we love you. We like you. We miss you,” he said. “Please come back home; go to police. If someone torture you or kidnap you, do something to come home. We really love you. Every day, we cry in your room.”

The truth came out when police interviewed Maarib when she was found.

According to Salazar, Maarib was physically abused by both of her parents, Abdulah Fahmi Al Hishmawi, 34, and Hamdiyah Sabah Al Hishmawi, 33, when she refused to marry the man they had set her up with.

"This young lady, at various times over that time period was subjected to some pretty bad abuse because she didn't want to be married to this person," Salazar said. "Several times it was reported to us that this young lady was abused with hot cooking oil being thrown on her body. She was beat with broomsticks. At least at one point, she was choked almost to the point of unconsciousness."

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Salazar pointed out that it was Maarib’s mother who threw the oil on her.

Police said the abuse only ceased when Maarib verbally agreed to the marriage.

Maarib ran away to avoid having to marry a man she did not want to. The FBI was called in to assist in the investigation, mainly for cultural and interpretational reasons due to the family’s Iraqi background.

“Thankfully we were able to find her safe and sound,” Salazar said.

Maarib is now in the custody of CPS, along with her five siblings, ages 5 to 15. Police are uncertain if her siblings were abused, too.

“We don’t know if those other siblings are victims of any abuse, but certainly the circumstances involving this case did cause us some concern,” Salazar said.

Sometime last year, Maarib’s parents arranged for her to marry a man in another city for $20,000, KSAT reports.

They were arrested Friday and charged with continuous violence against a family member. The father could be heard screaming at the crowd and blaming Maarib for the situation, according to My San Antonio.

"It's highly likely that he'll be facing charges as well," Salazar said, referring to the man Maarib was lined up to wed, the outlet reports.

The FBI may add more charges as it sees fit.

On Sunday, the parents were released on separate $30,000 bonds.

Maarib’s family moved to the U.S. two years ago on a visa. They previously lived in Iraq, where Abdulah was a linguist for the States, according to My San Antonio.

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