Three relatives of shooters, who were involved in the San Bernardino attack of 2015, have been arrested over an alleged marriage fraud.
Brother and sister-in-law of alleged shooter Syed Rizwan Farook, who along with his wife, Tashfeen Malik, perpetrated a mass attack and an attempted bombing at the Inland Regional Center, San Bernardino in 2015, were arrested along with Mariya Chernykh, the wife of Enrique Marquez Jr, who was also named co-conspirator in the attack.
On December 2, 2015, Farook and Malik, a married couple from Redlands, targeted San Bernardino County Department of Public Health event and an office holiday party, with around 80 employees. Farook worked as a health employee in the department. The mass attack claimed 14 lives and severely injured 22. After the shooting, the couple drove to a rented sports utility centre and were killed four hours after the police chase.
In a report by USA Today, James Comey, FBI Director, considered the couple as “homegrown extremists”. He said before the attacks they had been radicalised. But they were not associated with any foreign militant group.
Now, the case has taken a new turn, which has now alleged the shooters’ relatives over fraud.
Farook’s brother-in-law and sister-in-law and Chernykh herself were accused of fabricating a bogus marriage of Marquez Jr and Chernykh.
According to US Department of Justice, Chernykh, a Russian citizen, has been charged with fraud, misuse of visas, perjury, and false statement charges.
“We owe the victims, and the entire community of San Bernardino, a thorough investigation that uncovers all criminal activity surrounding these events,” said U.S. Atty. Eileen M. Decker said in a report by Los Angeles Times.
The court has prohibited all three of them from travelling outside the Southern California area. In a case of conviction, all three could face five years of imprisonment in the federal prison. But Chernykh carried additional charges and could face a 25-year sentence.