• Holder: Tsarnaev destroyed evidence, built bombs after marathon attacks


    BOSTON (MyFoxBoston.com) -- A memo from Attorney General Eric Holder revealed new details Thursday of what investigators allege the Boston Marathon bombing suspects did in the hours and days after the April 15 attacks.

    Holder wrote the letter to the bureau of prisons director to justify what Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's lawyers classify as "Special Administrative Measures" that were imposed on their client in August.

    "SAMs," as they are known, are used in terrorism cases and other high-profile cases when authorities allege there is "substantial risk" that a defendant's communications or contacts with people "could result in death or serious bodily injury" to others. The special restrictions were placed on shoe bomb suspect Richard Reid, "American Taliban" John Walker Lindh and other terror suspects. The 20-year-old's lawyers requested the restrictions be lifted Wednesday, calling them "overly harsh."

    The memo claims Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev spent much of their time trying to get rid of evidence and reaffirming their beliefs.

    Holder maintains that Tsarnaev discarded a remaining bomb detonator and smashed a cellphone he used to secretly communicate with his brother about the bombing.

    The document also claims the pair made additional bombs after the marathon and persuaded others to destroy evidence. It says the younger Tsarnaev told FBI agents he remained committed to waging jihad and that he hoped to inspire others to engage in violent behavior after his arrest. The memo claims there is no indication his "intentions have changed since."

    Tsarnaev's lawyers claim his legal rights are being violated since he hasn't been convicted. They said he has been confined to a cell and has "very limited access" to a small outdoor space. He is also reportedly not allowed to receive mail, speak to the media, or use the telephone.

    Holder said Tsarnaev has received nearly 1,000 pieces of mail in prison, mostly from people who believe he is innocent.

    Tsarnaev's legal team argued that the U.S. attorney general has no basis for placing these restrictions on their client, saying he has done nothing since his arrest that would pose a security risk.

    Authorities say Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, ethnic Chechens from Russia who emigrated to the United States as children, planned and carried out the attack to retaliate against the U.S. for its involvement in Muslim countries.

    Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed four days after the marathon following a gun battle with police. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found wounded and hiding in a boat in a backyard in Watertown. Investigators said he had scrawled anti-American messages on the inside of the boat, including "The U.S. Government is killing our innocent civilians" and "We Muslims are one body, you hurt one you hurt us all."

    To read the full memo: latimes.com

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