Sen. Lindsey Graham said on Thursday that a third man is being sought as s possible suspect in last week’s Boston Marathon terror bombings — a Muslim convert who may have had ties to the 26-year old man who was killed in gun battle with police on Friday.
“We now know of a third person,” the South Carolina Republican, a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, told Wolf Blitzer on CNN. “The young man tells us that they were self-radicalized from watching videos.
“Now, we’re looking for someone who was close to the older brother,” he said, referring to Tamerlan Tsarnaev. He died in the gunfight with police.
A man described by Tamerlan’s uncle only as Misha is believed to be a Muslim convert who steered the 26-year-old to a more radical form of Islam. The man has not been found by authorities.
“Somehow, he just took his brain,” Tamerlan’s uncle, Ruslan Tsarni, told The Daily Mail this week. “He just brainwashed him completely.”
Tsarni, who lives in Maryland, said that he recalled that Tamerlan’s father increasingly grew worried about Misha’s influence on his son. They had met in 2009.
According to the Daily Mail, all that is known about Misha is that he is Armenian, in his 30s, and has distinctive red beard. He no longer lives in the Cambridge, Mass., area.
Meanwhile, Graham told Blitzer on Thursday that with the addition of Misha to the case, “the plot thickens.”
“The young man said ‘nobody was involved — we became self-radicalized,’” he added, referring to Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, who was arrested on Friday after an intense manhunt and remained hospitalized and under heavy police guard in Boston on Thursday.
“Chechnyan rebels have joined al-Qaida in Afghanistan and Iraq. That is a really dangerous part of the world. I’d like to know who this third person was. Clearly, they did more than watch videos.”