Dzokhar Tsarnaev's College Buddies Face Backpack-Dump Charges in Bombing

Terror Suspect's Classmates Tossed Laptop and Fireworks

By Reuters

Published May 01, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Three new suspects were taken into custody in the investigation of last month’s deadly Boston Marathon bombing and will face charges of interfering with the probe, not planning or carrying out the attack, police and a U.S. law enforcement source said on Wednesday.

Dzokhar Tsarnaev
getty images
Dzokhar Tsarnaev

Two of the suspects were university classmates of 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who has been criminally charged with planting homemade pressure-cooker bombs at the marathon finish line on April 15 along with his older brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

U.S. officials on Wednesday identified and charged three new suspects they accused of interfering with the investigation into last month’s fatal bombing at the Boston Marathon, according to court papers.

Authorities charged two men, Azamat Tazhayakov and Dias Kadyrbayev, with conspiracy to obstruct justice by throwing away a backpack containing fireworks and a laptop computer belonging to Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, one of two brothers suspected of carrying out the April 15 attack.

U.S. prosecutors also charged a third man, Robel Phillipos, with making false statements to investigators, according to documents filed in federal court.

The U.S. law enforcement source said that two of the suspects are being held by immigration officials for violating the terms of their visas. The source said they are likely to face charges related to obstruction of justice and with making false statements to investigators.

Police are investigating whether the classmates threw away a backpack at Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s request after the bombing, which killed three people and injured 264 others, the law enforcement source said. The source identified the two men as Azmat Tazhayakov and Dias Kadyrbayev.

The third person taken into custody on Wednesday was a U.S. citizen, and all three were being investigated for actions taken after the bombings, the U.S. law enforcement source said.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who attended the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, is being held at a prison hospital where he is recovering from gunshot wound sustained in a gun battle with police. His older brother died in the gunfight.

A Boston Police spokeswoman, Katherine Shea, said on Wednesday that three men were taken into custody but she provided no further details.

Last week law enforcement officials were seen searching dumps in southeastern Massachusetts.

Kadyrbayev’s lawyer said his client was being held for violations of his student visa.

The lawyer, Robert Stahl, said his client was “not a target” of the bombing investigation, but declined to comment on any other specifics. He said his client had “cooperated fully” with investigators and “wants to go home to Kazakhstan.”

The parents of the Tsarnaev brothers have said in interviews in the North Caucasus region of Russia that they do not believe their sons were responsible for placing the bombs.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s body has still not been claimed, a spokesman for the state’s chief medical examiner said. His widow, Katherine Russell, on Tuesday said she wanted the medical examiner to release her husband’s body to his family.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Happy birthday William Shakespeare! Turns out, the Bard knew quite a bit about Jews.
  • Would you get to know racists on a first-name basis if you thought it might help you prevent them from going on rampages, like the recent shooting in Kansas City?
  • "You wouldn’t send someone for a math test without teaching them math." Why is sex ed still so taboo among religious Jews?
  • Russia's playing the "Jew card"...again.
  • "Israel should deal with this discrimination against Americans on its own merits... not simply as a bargaining chip for easy entry to the U.S." Do you agree?
  • For Moroccan Jews, the end of Passover means Mimouna. Terbhou ou Tse'dou! (good luck) How do you celebrate?
  • Calling all Marx Brothers fans!
  • What's it like to run the Palestine International Marathon as a Jew?
  • Does Israel have a racism problem?
  • This 007 hates guns, drives a Prius, and oh yeah — goes to shul with Scarlett Johansson's dad.
  • Meet Alvin Wong. He's the happiest man in America — and an observant Jew. The key to happiness? "Humility."
  • "My first bra was a training bra, a sports bra that gave the illusion of a flat chest."
  • "If the people of Rwanda can heal their broken hearts and accept the Other as human, so can we."
  • Aribert Heim, the "Butcher of Mauthausen," died a free man. How did he escape justice?
  • This guy skipped out on seder at his mom's and won a $1 million in a poker tournament. Worth it?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.