Khairullozhon Matanov of Quincy, Mass. was charged on Friday with one criminal count of destroying records and three counts of lying to officials in a terrorism investigation.
Matanov is said to be a friend of Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the two men accused of carrying out the Boston Bombings in March 2013.
The 23-year-old Kyrgyzstan national was not arrested for anything to do with the bombings.
It seems that after finding out his good friends were suspected terrorists, Matanov thought the best thing to do was to eliminate any connection to the pair.
His logic stemmed from the fact that he had supposedly voiced his support of the terrorist event during the immediate aftermath.
— 7News Boston (@7News) May 30, 2014
Matanov told others that he would consider it a "just cause" if the actions were committed in the name of Islam.
As the realization dawned on Matanov that his comments and connection to the brothers could lead the FBI to his doorstep, he began to change his tune.
He suddenly decided that the bombings were absolutely terrible. Federal authorities are also claiming he removed any and all images and references to the Tsarnaev brothers from his computer.
Investigators in the Boston Bombings probe said that Matanov asked an unnamed friend to destroy his phone when it was revealed that Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev were the alleged bombers. That friend refused.
— Mark Katic (@MarkKWBZ) May 30, 2014
Matanov's lawyer Edward Hayden said that his client never meant to disrupt the bombing probe.
"From what I can see," said Hayden, "what [Matanov] said and did didn't impede the investigation."
The defense attorney described his client as "very frightened" and said that Matanov was "surprised" at being taken into custody.
— The Boston Globe (@BostonGlobe) May 30, 2014
Though 26-year-old Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed during a confrontation with police, his 20-year-old brother Dzhokhar survived. The accused terrorist bomber will face 30 federal charges in his upcoming trial.
His former associate faces comparably minor charges. Matanov may be hoping for some form of sympathy in this hairy matter.
However when one voices an opinion that a devastating bombing could be a "just cause", odds are that leniency will not be forthcoming.
— Peter Wilson (@PetesWire) May 30, 2014
Do you think Matanov was right or wrong to deny his connection to the accused bombers? Comment below!
Image via YouTube