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May 1, 2013

UPDATE: 3 new arrests in Boston bombing include college friends

BOSTON — 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 Tsarnaev, was captured and lies 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 Tsarnaev.

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 Tsarnaev's relatives will claim his body now that his wife has agreed to release it, an uncle said. Tsarnaev, 26, has been at the medical examiner's office in Massachusetts since he died after a gunfight with authorities more than a week ago.

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