Former attorney general says Boston bombers must have had help in attack

Published April 28, 2013


A former U.S. attorney general says the two men police say are behind the deadly Boston Marathon bombings likely had help in the attack.

“I don’t believe they couldn’t have done what they did without technical assistance building the bomb and without…spiritual encouragement,” Michael Mukasey, the former U.S. attorney general under George W. Bush, told Fox News.

Mukasey added that he thinks the belief that the bombers only followed a rulebook from the Internet “doesn’t do it” for him.

Mukasey joins a growing number of officials who say Boston Marathon bombing suspects Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, and his older brother, Tamerlan, who was killed in a shootout with police, likely had assistance in the bombing that killed three people and injured more than 200.

He also said Dzhokhar Tsarnaev could possibly still be questioned for national intelligence purposes for information that could be kept separate from the criminal case.

Mukasey said if those interviews occurred, Tsarnaev wouldn’t have any right to have a lawyer present during the questioning. If Tsarneav filed a habeas corpus petition against such interviews, the challenge could reach the Supreme Court, Mukasey explained, but he thinks the ability to question Tsarnaev separately for intelligence purposes would be upheld.

“The only thing the Fifth Amendment protects you against is being a witness against yourself. That means in a criminal trial,” Mukasey said. “It doesn’t protect you against disclosing national intelligence information.”

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev stopped speaking to FBI interrogators after he was read his Miranda rights and got an attorney.

But Mukasey told Fox News authorities still have “ample evidence” of the attack without Tsarnaev’s statements, citing photographs of the bombing scene and Tsarnaev’s confession to a carjacking after the bombings.