Marathon bombings mastermind Tamerlan Tsarnaev was living on Massachusetts taxpayer-funded state welfare benefits even as he was delving deep into the world of radical anti-American Islamism.
Boston Herald (h/t Maria & Liz) In addition, both of Tsarnaev’s parents received benefits when they were in the U.S., as well as accused brother bombers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan when they were younger.
State officials confirmed last night that Tsarnaev, slain in a raging gun battle with police last Friday, was receiving benefits along with his wife, Katherine Russell Tsarnaev, and their 3-year-old daughter. The state’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services said those benefits ended in 2012 when the couple stopped meeting income eligibility limits. Russell Tsarnaev’s attorney has claimed Katherine — who had converted to Islam — was working up to 80 hours a week as a home health aide while Tsarnaev stayed at home.
The news raises questions over whether Tsarnaev financed his radicalization on taxpayer money. Their taxpayer-funded status came to light last night after repeated calls and emails to welfare officials from the Herald. They refused to comment throughout the day, but pressure mounted last night when the Herald started asking lawmakers whether the Department of Transitional Assistance should release the information.