updated 05/01/2013 AT 1:20 PM ET
•originally published 05/01/2013 AT 11:55 AM ET
Three more suspects were taken into custody in the Boston Marathon bombing case, including two college friends of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who came to the U.S. from Kazakhstan, officials said Wednesday.
The allegations against them were not immediately disclosed. Gov. Deval Patrick, who said he was briefed on the investigation, told reporters it’s his understanding that the suspects had nothing to do with the bombings but helped the suspect after the fact.
Three people were killed and more than 260 injured on April 15 when two bombs exploded near the finish line. Suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev died after a gunfight with police several days later. His brother, Dzhokhar, was captured and remains in a hospital prison.
Linda Cristello, a Boston attorney who represented Azamat Tazhayakov and Dias Kadyrbayev in immigration court Wednesday morning, said her clients now face separate federal charges and have an afternoon court appearance related to the bombing case.
The two have been held in jail for more than a week on allegations that they violated their student visas while attending the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth with Dzhokhar.
Christina DiIorio-Sterling, a spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, told reporters gathered outside federal court that the charges are expected to be unsealed Wednesday afternoon when they make their initial appearance before a magistrate judge.
The identity of the third new suspect wasn’t immediately released. A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation but not authorized to talk about it told The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity that it was a man.
Tamerlan’s relatives will claim his body now that his wife has agreed to release it, an uncle said. Tamerlan, 26, has been at the medical examiner’s office in Massachusetts since he died after a gunfight with authorities more than a week ago.
Amato DeLuca, the Rhode Island attorney for his widow, Katherine Russell, said Tuesday that his client had just learned that the medical examiner was ready to release Tamerlan’s body and that she wants it released to his side of the family.
Police said Tamerlan ran out of ammunition before his 19-year-old brother dragged his body under a vehicle while fleeing the scene. His cause of death has been determined but will not be made public until his remains are claimed.
“Of course, family members will take possession of the body,” uncle Ruslan Tsarni of Maryland said Tuesday night. “We’ll do it. We will do it. A family is a family.”
He would not elaborate. Tamerlan and Dzhokhar’s parents are still in Russia, but they have other relatives in the U.S., including Tsarni.
Tamerlan’s father, Anzor, announced plans last week to travel to the U.S. in the hope of burying his elder son, but he told the AP on Wednesday that those plans are off because he is suffering from bad headaches and high blood pressure. The 46-year-old said he still hopes to go when he is feeling better.
Dzhokhar was wounded in the shootout with police as he and his brother made their getaway attempt. He is charged with using a weapon of mass destruction to kill, a crime that carries a potential death sentence.