Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev received a COVID-19 relief payment of $1,400 in June, and now the court has ordered him to return it to the federal government, along with other money in Tsarnaev’s account, as payments owed to the victims of the bombing.
Tsarnaev was found guilty of the bombing in 2015 and – in addition to a death sentence, which is still being fought out in the courts – was ordered to pay $101,126,627 in restitution. According to federal prosecutors in their complaint, Tsarnaev has so far paid $2,202.03.
Prosecutors filed the complaint on Wednesday in a Massachusetts federal district court. According to prosecutors, Tsarnaev has $3,885.06 in his inmate trust account at the U.S. Florence ADMAX penitentiary. The money is overseen by the federal Bureau of Prisons. Besides the COVID-19 payment, federal prosecutors said there were multiple deposits from the Office of Federal Defenders of New York. They also noted that deposits were made to Tsarnaev’s account by an individual in Indianapolis, Indiana, totaling $2,555; an individual in Bloomsfield, New Jersey, totaling $1,450; and an individual in Frederick, Maryland, totaling $950. Tsarnaev also received money from 32 other people totaling $3,486.60.
Prosecutors said that while Tsarnaev has not made payments to his victims, he has spent about $2,000 on gifts to his siblings. They also said Tsarnaev had not reported this income to the court as required.
“The United States submits that the requested relief is reasonable and appropriate in this instance, especially in light of the Defendant prioritizing payments to his siblings over the victims of his crimes,” the complaint said.
The court issued an order the same day that all funds be turned over to the Clerk of the Court as payment to the victims of the bombing.
Tsarnaev’s lawyers have never contested that he and his brother set off the two bombs near the marathon finish line on April 15, 2013. Lingzi Lu, a 23-year-old Boston University graduate student from China; Krystle Campbell, a 29-year-old restaurant manager from Medford; and 8-year-old Martin Richard, who had gone to watch the marathon with his family, were killed. More than 260 people were injured.
During a four-day manhunt for the bombers, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Police Officer Sean Collier was shot dead in his car. Boston Police Officer Dennis Simmonds also died a year after he was wounded in a confrontation with the bombers.
Police captured a bloodied and wounded Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in the Boston suburb of Watertown, where he was hiding in a boat parked in a backyard, hours after his brother died. Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, had been in a gunfight with police and was run over by his brother as he fled.
Tsarnaev was convicted of all 30 charges against him, including conspiracy and use of a weapon of mass destruction and the killing of Collier during the Tsarnaev brothers’ getaway attempt. The appeals court upheld all but a few of his convictions.