The 21st Century Phenomenon


Three college friends of Boston Bombings suspect Djokhar Tsarnaev were arrested and accused, on Wednesday 05/01/2013, of removing a backpack containing hollowed-out fireworks from Tsarnaev’s dorm room three days after the attack. 


Two college friends of the Boston Marathon bomber, identified as Dias Kadyrbayev (1) and Azamat Tazhayakov (2), both 19-year-olds from Kazakhstan who were in the USA on student visas, and Robel Phillipos (3) 19, of Cambridge, Mass. All are current or former students at U-Mass.-Dartmouth, were accused of trying to cover up his involvement by removing evidence from his dorm room and a third was charged with lying to the FBI. 


Dias Kadyrbayev and Azamat Tazhayakov were accused of removing a laptop computer and a backpack containing empty fireworks from Tsarnaev’s dorm room and throwing them in a dumpster after learning of his suspected involvement in the bombing. Robel Phillipos was charged with lying to federal investigators. 

The three were not accused of involvement in the attack, but a footnote in court papers said that about a month before the bombing, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev told Tazhayakov and Kadyrbayev that he knew how to make a bomb. 

The charges were accompanied by an affidavit by FBI agent Scott P. Cieplik that provided new details of Tsarnaev’s actions after the bombing and laid out how his friends, after recognizing him on TV, on 04/18/2013, as one of the suspects, allegedly tried to help him. 


Dias Kadyrbayev told the FBI that a few minutes later he received a telephone call from Robel Phillipos, who told him to turn on the television because one of the suspects looked familiar. Kadyrbayev said that one of the suspects looked like Tsarnaev and that he texted Tsarnaev, saying he looked like the man on television. The FBI affidavit described the Tazhayakov and Kadyrbayev as close friends of Tsarnaev’s who talked to him in the two days after the bombing. 


Tazhayakov said Tsarnaev gave him a ride home from campus on April 16. Kadyrbayev told the FBI he met Tsarnaev outside his dorm on April 17, after the Boston bombing, and noticed he had given himself a short haircut. 


Shortly after being alerted to Tsarnaev’s resemblance to one of the suspects on April 18, Kadyrbayev, Tazhayakov and Phillipos went to Tsarnaev’s dorm room. Just before entering, Kadyrbayev showed Tazhayakov a text message from Tsarnaev — “I’m about to leave if you need something in my room take it.” Tazhayakov told the FBI he believed he would never see Tsarnaev alive again. The three friends,allegedly went to Tsarnaev’s dorm room after the FBI photos came out April 18 and left with a backpack that contained fireworks tubes that had been emptied of their explosive powder, according to court documents. 


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