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Boston Police: 3 More Suspects in Custody in Marathon Attack

5:27 PM, May 1, 2013   |    comments
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By Kevin Johnson and Doug Stanglin, USA Today

Three college roommates of Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev have been arrested on suspicion of allegedly removing some of his personal effects from their dorm room at his direction following the April 15 attack, a law enforcement source reported Wednesday.

None of the three is suspected of having advance knowledge of the plot or participating in the planning of the bombing.

Two law enforcement officials briefed on the investigation say two of the three are originally from Kazakhstan who were friendly with Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the Associated Press reported.

Linda Cristello, a Boston attorney who represented Azamat Tazhayakov and Dias Kadyrbayev in immigration court Wednesday morning, confirmed her clients now face separate federal charges and have an afternoon court appearance related to the bombing case.

At the immigration hearing, which involved alleged visa violations, lawyers for the two men said they had cooperated with Homeland Security and FBI investigators for hours and were only college friends Tsarnaev and should be released, The Boston Globe reported.

The pair have been held in a county jail for more than a week on allegations that they violated their student visas while attending the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth with Tsarnaev, who is originally from Russia.

The name of the third suspect was not immediately released.

Three law enforcement sources confirmed the arrests, which were also announced by the Boston Police Department on its Twitter account. The sources asked not to be identified because they are not authorized to discuss the case publicly

The police department, however, did not elaborate on the identity of the suspects or their relation to the case, but did emphasize that "there is no threat to public safety."

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, has already been charged in connection with the bombings that killed 3 people and injured more than 260.

Tsarnaev, whose 26-year-old brother Tamerlan died in a shootout with police three days after the attack, is being held at a prison medical center in Massachusetts.

NBC News' Pete Williams reported that authorities had been watching the three suspects for about 10 days. Two of them were taken into custody several days ago on "immigration issue" and the third was arrested today.

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