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Police: Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s Body Has Been Buried

BOSTON, (UPI) –  Tamerlan Tsarnaev, killed in a shootout with Boston police who believed he was one of the Boston Marathon bombers, has been buried, police said Thursday.

His body had languished in a funeral home after multiple cities refused to accept it, the Boston Herald reported.

Worcester, Mass., police Sgt. Kerry Hazelhurst said a “courageous and compassionate individual” provided a burial plot.

Hazelhurst did not identify the burial site, but said Tsarnaev’s body “is no longer in the city of Worcester and is entombed.”

Investigators in the Boston Marathon bombings are looking into whether Tamerlan Tsarnaev contacted extremists while visiting Dagestan, officials said.

Investigators are looking into a number of contacts Tsarnaev might have made in the Russian republic as well as time he spent with a relative who is a prominent Islamist leader recently arrested by Russian authorities, The New York Times reported Thursday.

One official in Russia said he didn’t have enough information to speak authoritatively one way or the other about Tsarnaev’s contacts in Dagestan, but did conclude Tsarnaev meant to hook up with militants but failed.

“My presumed theory is that he evidently came here, he was looking for contacts, but he did not find serious contacts, and if he did, they didn’t trust him,” said Habib Magomedov, a member of Dagestan’s anti-terrorism commission.

Tsarnaev, 26, was killed in a shootout with the police April 19, four days after the Boston Marathon bombings. After a manhunt, his brother, Dzhokhar, 19, also suspected in the bombings, was captured and is in a federal prison medical facility in Massachusetts. Three people died and more than 260 people were wounded in the twin bomb blasts near the marathon’s finish line.

The Times said the Russians were investigating Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s online activity, including whether he and Canadian-born militant William Plotnikov could have been members of a larger group of Russians who mobilized online under the backing of an organization in Europe.

Investigators also were looking into time Tsarnaev spent in 2012 with a distant cousin, Magomed Kartashov, founder of Union of the Just, which campaigns for Sharia and Islamic unity in Dagestan, Time magazine first reported.

While the group publicly renounces violence, some members have close ties to militants and others have spent time in prison for weapons possession and abetting terrorism, Time said.

Tsarnaev’s mother, Zubeidat Tsarnaeva, confirmed her son is Kartashov’s third cousin. The two met for the first time in Dagestan, she said, and “became very close.”

On May 5, three agents from Russia’s Federal Security Service questioned Kartashov about the Boston bombings, attorney Patimat Abdullaeva said, adding the agents were interested in whether Kartashov and Tsarnaev ever discussed Islamic radicalism.

Kartashov, in jail since late April for fighting with police, said the cousins had discussed radicalism but claimed Tsarnaev was trying to lure Kartashov into extremism, his lawyer told Time, which was denied its request to interview the cousin.

“Kartashov tried to talk [Tsarnaev] out of his interest in extremism,” Abdullaeva said.

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