Suspect Linked to Boston Blasts Flew to Russia in ’12 – Report

WASHINGTON, April 19 (RIA Novosti) – One of the brothers suspected of involvement in the deadly Boston Marathon bombings left on a Russia-bound plane in January 2012 and returned to the United States seven months later, the NBC 4 New York television station reported Friday, citing travel records the network said it had obtained.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who was killed early Friday in a shootout during a chaotic manhunt in Boston, departed New York City’s John F. Kennedy (JFK) airport on Jan. 12, 2012, on a flight bound for Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport, NBC 4 New York cited the travel records as saying. The brothers’ family hails from the war-torn Russian republic of Chechnya.

Tsarnaev, 26, remained abroad until July 17, 2012, when he re-entered the United States at JFK, the television station reported.

It was unclear from the report whether Tsarnaev stayed in Russia during his time abroad. The travel documents showed a photograph of the terrorism suspect sporting a beard and that he first entered the United States on July 19, 2003, NBC 4 New York reported.

Tsarnaev’s brother, 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, is also suspected in Monday’s twin blasts at the Boston Marathon, which killed three people and injured more than 170. The younger Tsarnaev was being pursued by authorities in Boston in a manhunt Friday.

A US-based uncle of the Tsarnaevs said in a televised interview Friday that the young men come from an ethnic Chechen family that lived in the restive Russian region of Dagestan and the Central Asian republic of Kyrgzystan.

The family came to the United States about a decade ago after fleeing Russia’s violence-ridden North Caucasus region in the wake of the second Chechen war, US media cited friends and relatives as saying Friday.

Updated with new headline and small modifications throughout.

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