Terrorism charges for man who bought guns used in San Bernardino attack

LOS ANGELES -- The man who bought the assault rifles used by his friend in the San Bernardino massacre was charged Thursday with terrorism-related counts.

See Full Article

The FBI arrested Enrique Marquez, 24, on charges of conspiring with Syed Rizwan Farook to commit terrorist attacks in 2011 and 2012 that they never carried out. Marquez was Farook's next-door neighbour and longtime friend who converted to Islam and was radicalized by Farook, federal prosecutors said.

Marquez also was charged with illegally purchasing two assault rifles used by Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, to kill 14 people at a holiday gathering of Farook's health department co-workers on Dec. 2. The shooters died hours later in a gunbattle with police.

Marquez had no role in the attack, but prosecutors said the guns and bomb-making materials he bought that the couple planned to detonate linked him to the killings.

"While there currently is no evidence that Mr. Marquez participated in the Dec. 2 attack or had advance knowledge of it, his prior purchase of the firearms and ongoing failure to warn authorities about Farook's intent to commit mass murder had fatal consequences," U.S. Attorney Eileen Decker said.

Authorities previously said Marquez had legally purchased the high-powered guns.

The FBI investigated the rampage as an act of terrorism and said the Muslim couple were radicalized before they met online and communicated privately about jihad and martyrdom before they married.

President Barack Obama said he was briefed on the investigation Thursday and reiterated the federal government's commitment to find answers to all the unknowns in the case.

Marquez had deep ties with Farook that extended to a family connection. The two grew up next door to each other in Riverside and then became related through marriage.

Both men were witnesses at the wedding of Farook's brother, Raheel, to a Russian woman in 2011, according to Riverside County marriage records.

Last year, Marquez married the sister of Raheel Farook's wife. That made Marquez and Raheel Farook brothers-in-law and gave Marquez and Syed Rizwan Farook a sister-in-law in common.

Marquez faces an additional immigration charge for a sham marriage.

Records show that Marquez married Mariya Chernykh at a ceremony at the Islamic Society of Corona-Norco, though the mosque's facility manager denied it occurred there.

Marquez was not a member of that mosque, Azmi Hasan said. Marquez worshipped there three to four times over seven years, Hasan said.

Right after the shooting, Marquez called his mother to say he was safe but that he wouldn't be coming home, neighbour Lorena Aguirre said. He later checked into a mental health facility.

Three days after the attack, federal agents raided his mother's house in Riverside, a city near San Bernardino that is about 60 miles east of Los Angeles.

Armida Chacon has said her son is a good person who loved to hang out with friends and go to parties, according to The Los Angeles Times.

"I don't know how this happened. ... My world is upside-down," she said tearfully.

When asked about Syed Farook, she said her son was friends with him and "nothing more."

Marquez was a licensed security guard for several years, but his license expired at the end of 2014. He was hired to work at Wal-Mart in May but has since been fired, a company spokesman said.

Tucker reported from Washington.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Trudeau cabinet welcomes Trump's order on Keystone XL [Video]

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Federal cabinet ministers meeting in Calgary welcomed news Tuesday that the Trump administration was giving the go-ahead to the Keystone XL pipeline, even as uncertainty hangs in the air over what new conditions the United States will try to impose. Source
  • B.C. woman killed in Thailand, friend seriously injured in jeep crash

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Friends and family are banding together to pay medical bills for a former Alberta woman injured in a traffic accident in Thailand that killed her friend. Nezabravka (Nezi) Borislavova, 24, suffered extensive injuries — including internal wounds, two broken shoulders, a fractured wrist and arm — after their rental vehicle went out of control during a severe rainstorm, struck a lamp post and rolled down an embankment during a drive from Phuket to Bangkok late last week. Source
  • Edmonton man charged with assault, uttering threats at women's rally

    Canada News CTV News
    EDMONTON -- An Edmonton man faces charges stemming from a political rally on the weekend. Police have charged Jason Bews, who is 34, with assault and uttering threats. The complainant is a reporter for The Rebel TV, an online outlet devoted to right-wing commentary, activism and reporting. Source
  • Internationally-recognized Toronto hairdresser, beauty executive killed in Los Angeles

    Canada News CBC News
    Police on Tuesday were investigating the killing of internationally-known Toronto hairdresser and beauty company executive Fabio Sementilli, who was found beaten and stabbed at a Los Angeles home. Detectives did not immediately provide a possible motive. Source
  • Trudeau says he went to Aga Khan's island in private helicopter in 2014 too

    Canada News CBC News
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he went to the Aga Khan's private island in the Bahamas at Christmas in 2014, when he was an MP and leader of the Liberal Party, travelling there on the wealthy philanthropist's private helicopter. Source
  • 2014 visit to Aga Khan's island was also by private helicopter, Trudeau says

    Canada News CBC News
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he went to the Aga Khan's private island in the Bahamas at Christmas in 2014, when he was an MP and leader of the Liberal Party, travelling there on the wealthy philanthropist's private helicopter. Source
  • Teacher sentenced for engaging in sex acts with students blames Muslim upbringing

    World News Toronto Sun
    A New Jersey teacher sentenced to three years in prison for engaging in sex acts and sending numerous sexually explicit text messages to teenage students blames her strict Muslim upbringing for the crimes. Linda Hardan, of Prospect Park, N.J. Source
  • '1984' sales soar after 'alternative facts,' Trump claims

    World News CTV News
    NEW YORK - In the wake of incorrect or unprovable statements made by President Donald Trump and some White House aides, one truth is undeniable: Sales are soaring for George Orwell's "1984." Orwell's classic dystopian tale of a society in which facts are distorted and suppressed in a cloud of "newspeak" was in the top 5 on Amazon.com as of midday Tuesday. Source
  • Manitoba minister won't say whether ban on night hunting is on the table

    Canada News CTV News
    WINNIPEG -- The Manitoba government refused to say Tuesday whether it will try to ban indigenous hunting at night -- a move that would appease municipal leaders and anger indigenous groups. Sustainable Development Minister Cathy Cox emerged from a 40-minute meeting with reeves from several communities in western Manitoba to say the government plans to bring both sides to the table in the near future and try to work out an agreement. Source
  • Facebook page bait-and-switch for Trudeau event could make U of C look racist: student

    Canada News CBC News
    Judging from a Facebook page for a University of Calgary event, you might think thousands of students are interested in a Nazi-themed protest of Justin Trudeau — but Nina Rojkovskaia wants you to know that's not how the page looked when she initially responded. Source