Convicted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has been ordered by prosecutors to return a $1,400 COVID relief payment he received last summer along with other money he has received, according to a court filing Wednesday.
The money should instead be used as restitution to his victims, the filing said.
Tsarnaev has $3,885.06 in his inmate trust account, with the money received from the government, the Office of Federal Defenders of New York and from private citizens.
He spent several thousand on his siblings for “gifts” “support” and “books” but has barely paid any of the more than $101 million owed to the victims or the $3,000 special assessment as part of his sentencing, the court filing said.
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The inmate, who was sentenced to death two years after the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, which left three people dead and hundreds hurt, has paid only $2,202.03 in restitution so far.
The death sentence was overturned in 2020 after a court ruled that a trial judge erred by excluding some evidence. An appeal to reinstate his death sentence is currently before the U.S. Supreme Court.
He is allowed to use money for clothes and books and other items that can help him in prison but the rest should go toward victim payments, prosecutors said.
“By Congressional mandate, the United States has a statutory duty to collect restitution owed to crime victims,” prosecutors said in the document, citing a lien placed on Tsarnaev’s property, including his trust account, after his conviction.
“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 filing said.
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It wasn’t explained how Tsarnaev received a COVID relief payment.
Authorities say Tsarnaev and his brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, planted bombs near the marathon’s finish line, resulting in deaths and injuries when the bombs exploded. The brother later died in a shootout with police during a manhunt.
Seventeen of the injured people lost at least one limb in the attack.