Neighbor of San Bernardino shooters denied bail, could serve 35 years in prison

December 21, 2015 23:02
2 minute read.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - A federal magistrate on Monday refused to grant bail to a man accused of providing the assault-style rifles a married couple used to massacre 14 people in San Bernardino, California, in an attack inspired by Islamic State.

Enrique Marquez, 24, who told authorities he had plotted attacks with Syed Rizwan Farook before their friendship waned, was shackled for his court appearance and was visibly upset by the denial of bail.

Marquez was arrested on Friday and charged with providing material support to terrorists for supplying Farook, 28, and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, 29, with the weapons for their Dec. 2 attack on a holiday party attended by Farook's co-workers.

Their assault, which came a few weeks after Islamic State gunmen and suicide bombers killed 130 people in a series of coordinated attacks around Paris, has raised anxieties about violence throughout the United States and refocused the race for the White House on national security issues.

Public defenders representing Marquez at a hearing in federal court in Riverside east of Los Angeles urged Magistrate David Bristow to release him on bail, saying that he did not pose a threat to the community and was not a flight risk.

But Bristow sided with prosecutors, ruling that the crimes of which Marquez is accused are so grave that while he might not flee, he could pose a risk to the community.

"At this point the defendant has not yet rebutted the presumption that he is a danger to the community," Bristow said.

Marquez, who had been working at a bar and a Walmart, had shuffled into court wearing a white jumpsuit, his legs and arms shackled and a chain around his waist. His face was covered in stubble and he swiveled back and forth in his chair as his lawyers spoke.

Marquez, who has not yet entered a plea, could be sentenced to up to 35 years in prison if convicted of all charges, which also include defrauding US immigration authorities by entering into a sham marriage with a Russian woman in Farook's extended family so she could live in the United States.

Hours after the massacre, a distressed Marquez had called 911 to say he wanted to kill himself and that Farook had used a weapon bought by Marquez, according to a Federal Bureau of Investigation affidavit. He then checked himself into a mental health facility.

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