The police and FBI in the Northern Marianas have begun sifting through a landfill as part of their search for two sisters who went missing two weeks ago.
More than 20 special agents from the FBI and volunteers have been assisting police in the hunt for ten-year old Faloma and nine-year-old Maleina Luhk.
A police spokesman Jason Tarkong says equipment including shovels, boots and gloves have been purchased for the search in the Marpi landfill.
"It's still treated as a missing persons. Hopefully they had runaway or they're with someone and they'll be home safely and the person's afraid to bring them forward, we're not sure. The worst case scenario is that's one of the thing's why we're checking the landfill to just make sure we cover all the bases and we're covering all the every angle in the investigation."
Jason Tarkong says cash rewards totalling more than 14,000 US dollars from the FBI, police and various other groups are now being offered for information leading to the safe return of the school girls.