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Friday, July 19, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Trial on San Bernardino Attack Pushed to July

LOS ANGELES (CN) - The trial of the man accused of buying the assault rifles used by Sayed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik in the San Bernardino terror attacks has been postponed.

In a Feb. 1 order, U.S. District Judge Jesus Bernal continued the trial of Enrique Marquez Jr. from Feb. 23 to July 19.

In doing so, Bernal said that a "failure to grant the continuance would be likely to make a continuation of the proceeding impossible, or result in a miscarriage of justice" and called the case "so unusual and so complex, due to the nature of the prosecution" that holding the trial this month would not be reasonable.

A federal grand jury indicted Marquez, a friend of Farook, on Dec. 30 on charges of conspiring to provide material support to terrorists.

He was also indicted on two counts of making a false statement in regard to the purchase of two assault rifles that were used in the deadly shooting at the Inland Regional Center, and of marriage fraud and making a false statement on immigration paperwork in relation to an alleged sham marriage with a member of Farook's family.

Marquez told investigators that he and Farook had abandoned plans to mount terrorist attacks on Riverside Community College and on the 91 freeway. Marquez distanced himself from Farook after their plans collapsed, according to his indictment.

Marquez in January pleaded not guilty to the terrorism charges.

He is being held without bond in federal custody. If convicted on all counts, Marquez could be sentenced to 50 years in prison.

A status conference and motions hearing date is scheduled for June 27 in Riverside.

On Dec. 2, 2015 Farook and Malik opened fire on county employees at the Inland Regional Center killing 14 people and injuring 22. They were killed the same day after engaging in gun fight with the police on the streets of San Bernardino.

U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman Thom Mrozek noted Thursday that a Feb. 8 motions hearing had been taken off calendar.

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