The third alleged accomplice accused of aiding Dzhokhar Tsarnaev after the Boston bombings has been named as Robel Phillipos, a 19-year-old friend and classmate of the accused bomber.
Phillipos is the only American among the alleged accomplices, the other two being Kazakh nationals who were previously detained on immigration charges. While he is charged with making false statements, the other two are charged with disposing of a backpack full of emptied fireworks tubes that they found in Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s dorm room.
Here’s what we know so far about Phillipos…
1. He Allegedly Lied to the Feds
Phillipos is charged with making false statements to federal agents investigating the Boston bombings. He allegedly lied by denying that he and other alleged accomplices visited Tsarnaev’s dorm room on the night of April 18. For this charge he could face up to eight years in prison. He’s not charged with obstruction of justice, as the two other alleged accomplices are — for allegedly disposing of a backpack full of fireworks, emptied of their gun powder.
2. He’s of Ethiopian Descent But is American
Friend of #Phillipos says he lives w mom in Cambridge; family is from Ethiopia; saw suspects picture on tv today and says “it’s really sad”
— Adam Harding (@AdamHardingNews) May 1, 2013
Phillipos’ parents came to the U.S. from Ethiopia and raised him in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The 19-year-old attended UMass-Dartmouth, beginning in the same year as his friend Tsarnaev.
Phillipos lives within yards of the Cambridge gas station where the carjacking victim allegedly taken hostage by the Tsarnaev brothers escaped.
3. He Claims the Fireworks Disappeared While he Was Taking a Nap
idk if Phillipos’ nap is going to hold up as an alibi twitter.com/RosieGray/stat…
— Rosie Gray (@RosieGray) May 1, 2013
4. He Studies Marketing
Judging by this Prezi account, marketing is a focus of Phillipos’ studies.
5. He’s the One Who Recognized the Bomber on TV
It was Phillipos who first recognized Dzhkokar Tsarneav’s photo on the TV news and pointed it out to his friend, telling him to turn on the TV news.
Read the complaint below: