Quantcast
  

Friday, April 18, 2014         

 Print   Email   Comment | View 13 Comments   Most Popular   Save   Post   Retweet

Man accused of lying after bombings seeks release

By Associated Press

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 09:25 a.m. HST, May 05, 2013



BOSTON >> Lawyers for a man charged with lying to investigators after the Boston Marathon bombings are asking a federal judge to release him from jail, saying he had nothing to do with the deadly bombings and isn't a flight risk.

Robel Phillipos, 19, of Cambridge, faces a detention hearing Monday in U.S. District Court. Defense attorneys said in court documents filed Saturday that authorities' claim that Phillipos gave them conflicting accounts is "refutable."

"This case is about a frightened and confused 19 year old who was subjected to intense questioning and interrogation, without the benefit of counsel, and in the context of one of the worst attacks against the nation," lawyers Derege Demissie and Susan Church wrote. "The weight of the federal government under such circumstances can have a devastatingly crushing effect on the ability of an adolescent to withstand the enormous pressure and respond rationally."

Phillipos was charged last week with lying to investigators about visiting bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's college dorm room on April 18, three days after the bombings. Two other friends were charged with conspiring to obstruct justice by taking a backpack with fireworks and a laptop from Tsarnaev's dorm room.

Phillipos was at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, where all four men had studied, by coincidence on April 18, his lawyers said in the court papers. He had taken a leave of absence in December and hadn't spoken to Tsarnaev or the other two men for more than two months, they said.

"By sheer coincidence and bad luck, he was invited to attend a seminar on campus on April 18," the night the three allegedly went to Tsarnaev's dorm room, according to the documents. "As such, he did not have much to offer the authorities regarding the investigation of the suspect."

To support their request for bail, the lawyers filed affidavits from friends and relatives of Phillipos who described him as a considerate, thoughtful and friendly young man, the son of a single mother who emigrated to the United States from Ethiopia. They said he wasn't a flight risk, noting that he is lifelong resident of Massachusetts and has many relatives there.

Phillipos faces a maximum of eight years behind bars and a $250,000 fine if convicted.

Tsarnaev and his 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan, are accused of carrying out the April 15 bombing, which used pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails, ball bearings and metal shards. The attack killed three people and injured more than 260 others near the marathon's finish line.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev died after a gunfight with police days later. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, was captured and remains in a prison hospital. He has been charged with using a weapon of mass destruction and faces a potential death sentence if convicted.







 Print   Email   Comment | View 13 Comments   Most Popular   Save   Post   Retweet

COMMENTS
(13)
You must be subscribed to participate in discussions
By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. Because only subscribers are allowed to comment, we have your personal information and are able to contact you. If your comments are inappropriate, you may receive a warning, and if you persist with such comments you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email commentfeedback@staradvertiser.com.
Leave a comment

Please login to leave a comment.
Skyler wrote:
Do you guys even bother to proof stuff before you post it online?
on May 5,2013 | 01:09AM
RichardCory wrote:
No, never.
on May 5,2013 | 02:48AM
bumbye wrote:
They just wanted to make the article seem longer. Maybe they get paid by the word.
on May 5,2013 | 03:06AM
palani wrote:
Probably just another "coincidence".
on May 5,2013 | 05:50AM
Ronin006 wrote:
Following comment was sent for approval. Why? “Put aside the poor editing and focus on the substance, that being the liar wanting to be released from jail. The investigation still is ongoing and could result in more charges being filed against Phillipos and his two terrorist-loving friends. Phillipos is a US citizen but it is not clear if he is native born or naturalized as some media have reported. One report says Phillipos “is an American citizen like Tsarnaev,” the bombing suspect in custody who is a naturalized US citizen. Phillipos’ parents are from Ethiopia. I would consider him a flight risk. He needs to be kept locked up until he is tried, convicted, serves his sentence, has his citizenship revoke if naturalized and kicked out of the country.”
on May 5,2013 | 09:16AM
yrusodz wrote:
Hmm...this guy knowing he's under suspicion supposedly has nothing to hide but lies anyway. Allie, is this guy a relative of yours???
on May 5,2013 | 05:27AM
bullturd wrote:
The reporter who wrote this story was either a "Writer Stutterer" or the proof reader is a dozer. LOL
on May 5,2013 | 08:22AM
false wrote:
Hit the "paste key" by mistake. Bigger problem is for the "paste key" in Phillipos head. Someone needs to consider how they choose associations and "red lights" should flare at the innuendo of involvement in this horrific event. It was already in the news and from that noise, he should have been running in the other direction. They chose their outcome by going into the premises. They inserted themselves knowingly into the event. Done. Guilty by association in the time described.
on May 5,2013 | 08:51AM
Ronin006 wrote:
Put aside the poor editing and focus on the substance, that being the liar wanting to be released from jail. The investigation still is ongoing and could result in more charges being filed against Phillipos and his two terrorist-loving friends. Phillipos is a US citizen but it is not clear if he is native born or naturalized as some media have reported. One report says Phillipos “is an American citizen like Tsarnaev,” the bombing suspect in custody who is a naturalized US citizen. Phillipos’ parents are from Ethiopia. I would consider him a flight risk. He needs to be kept locked up until he is tried, convicted, serves his sentence, has his citizenship revoke if naturalized and kicked out of the country.
on May 5,2013 | 09:15AM
Dragonman wrote:
He is a young man but not a child. Someone planted two bombs at the Boston Marathon that killed people and injured around 300 people watching the event. He should have called the authorities immediately when he realized he had information pertaining to the event, instead he decided to help his two friends dispose critical evidence. At the very least he should have realized what was going on with his friends when they visited the bombers apartment. He now has to pay for his bad judgement or maybe he knew what he was doing all along. The result is he now stands trial. In my opinion he should remain in custody.
on May 5,2013 | 09:45AM
Hawaiians wrote:
Do more digging.
on May 5,2013 | 12:17PM
Ronin006 wrote:
Wrong. Need to dig his grave.
on May 5,2013 | 12:37PM
nitpikker wrote:
yeah release him and immediately deport him to wherever he came from!!
on May 5,2013 | 10:37AM
IN OTHER NEWS
Breaking News