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Friend Of Accused Boston Bomber Found Guilty Of Lying To Police

Robel Phillipos, a friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, has been found guilty of lying to FBI agents investigating the attack.

Prosecutors said Phillipos lied about having visited Tsarnaev's dorm room days after the April 15, 2013, attack that killed three people and wounded more than 260 others.

Phillipos, 21, of Cambridge, Mass., and two other Tsarnaev friends, Dias Kadyrbayev and Azamat Tazhayakov of Kazakhstan, allegedly removed a laptop and a backpack that contained fireworks components from the suspected bomber's dorm room at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.

Phillipos, who was arrested in May 2013 and pleaded not guilty in September, faced two counts of lying — one for saying he did not remember being in Tsarnaev's dorm room and one for denying it, according to Reuters. Following an FBI interrogation, Phillipos signed a written confession.

As we reported in May of last year, the three men allegedly agreed to dispose of evidence in order to help their friend "avoid trouble." Authorities later found the the backpack in a nearby landfill. Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov have both pleaded not guilty to allegations that they misled police.

Phillipos is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 29. He faces up to eight years on each count.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.