In-laws of accused Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev appear before grand jury

The in-laws of one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects appeared before a federal grand jury in Boston Thursday in an apparent investigation related to the April 15 attacks, their lawyer said Thursday.

“They were asked to go before a grand jury, they told the truth, answered whatever questions they were asked,” said Amato DeLuca, of DeLuca & Weizenbaum in Providence.

He did not discuss the nature of the grand jury investigation or the questions, which are kept secret by law.

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Judith and Warren Russell declined to comment to the Associated Press, which first reported their appearance, as they entered the grand jury room.

Katherine Russell was the wife of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, one of the brothers suspected in the bombings that killed three people, injured more than 250, and created a weeklong scare throughout Boston and the country. He was killed in a gun battle with police and was allegedly hit by a car his brother was driving while fleeing the scene.

The brother, 20-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, faces terrorism charges in federal court including using a weapon of mass destruction resulting in death, and he could face the death penalty. He has pleaded not guilty.

Three of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s friends have also been charged with lying to authorities and obstruction of justice, and are expected to appear in court on Friday.

The US Attorney’s office would not say whether an investigation is ongoing and would not confirm or deny whether the Russell family was called to testify.

DeLuca, who represents the Russell family, said he has been told that Katherine Russell is not a target in the investigation. She and Tsarnaev married in 2010 and they had a child together. They lived in Cambridge, though she moved in with her parents in Rhode Island after the bombings.

DeLuca said Russell and her parents have no knowledge of the bombings.

In the meantime, “It’s awful to have this hanging over your head, when periodically it’s brought back up again, like now,” he said.

“It’s quite an intrustion, but I guess everyone’s trying to find some closure.”