Three of Tsarnaev's college friends face charges of hampering the
probe into the blast, which killed three people and injured more
At hearings this week, lawyers for one student, Dias Kadyrbayev,
sought to prove that the statements he made to law enforcement four
days after the bombing were not voluntary and should not be admitted
James Wiroll, a special agent with the U.S. Department of Homeland
Security, recalled arresting Kadyrbayev and his roommate Azamat
Tazhayakov, both Kazakh nationals, on immigration violations five
days after the attack.
Wiroll said Kadyrbayev told him he had thrown away the backpack,
which contained empty fireworks cases, and the laptop after coming
to suspect that Tsarnaev had committed the bombing.
"He suspected Tsarnaev was one of the Boston Marathon bombers and he
threw the items away," Wiroll said, reading from a report written
shortly after the arrest.
Prosecutors on Thursday released some 300 text messages that
Kadyrbayev sent or received, including a series of messages from
shortly after the FBI released photos of the Tsarnaev brothers.
In one message, Kadyrbayev writes to Tsarnaev: "u saw the news?"
Tsarnaev responds: "Better not text me my friend," adding, "Lol".
"If yu want yu can go to my room and take what's there," Tsarnaev
Later that night, Kadyrbayev found Tsarnaev's backpack, according to
Tsarnaev is awaiting trial. His older brother, Tamerlan, died in a
gunbattle with police four days after the attack.
A diplomatic representative from Kazakhstan was present and
translated some documents when Wiroll interviewed Kadyrbayev.
Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov were first questioned by investigators
four days after the bombing, when heavily armed law enforcement
agents arrived at their New Bedford, Massachusetts, apartment. The
next day, they were arrested on charges of violating the terms of
their student visas.
A stream of federal agents had testified at three days of pre-trial
hearings that Kadyrbayev's interviews were voluntary.
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"He was relaxed, he was animated when he spoke, at times he would
laugh," said FBI Special Agent Steven Schiliro, who interviewed
Kadyrbayev the night before his arrest.
Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov face conspiracy and obstruction of justice
charges, which carry a penalty of up to 25 years in prison. A third
man, Robel Phillipos of Cambridge, Massachusetts, faces a less
serious charge of lying to investigators, which could mean a
possible 16-year sentence.
Separately, prosecutors reported in a court filing that the police
barracks received a phone call that night from a person identifying
himself as a public defender, but that the caller was not put in
touch with either of the men being interrogated.
"A plain-clothes detective told (FBI special agent, Farbod) Azad and
Special Agent (Michael) Blane that a man who claimed to be an
attorney for 'the Dartmouth students' had called the barracks,"
prosecutors said in a filing in U.S. District Court in Boston.
"Azad did not relay to the defendants any aspect of what the
detective told him."
Kadyrbayev is due to take the stand to testify on whether his
comments were made voluntarily but will not do so this week. His
appearance was delayed until after an expert witness gives testimony
on his proficiency in English.
(Reporting by Scott Malone; Editing by Barbara Goldberg, Chizu
Nomiyama and Gunna Dickson; Editing by Kim Coghill, Larry King)
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