Boston Marathon bombing trial: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev 'wanted to punish America', court is told

Prosecutors completed their arguments against the young Chechen-American

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The Independent US

The young man accused of setting off blasts at the finishing line of the Boston Marathon “wanted to punish America”, a court has been told.

Prosecutors completing their case against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, claimed the young man had put his own beliefs ahead of ordinary people.

“The defendant thought that his values were more important than the people around him. He wanted to awake the mujahideen, the holy warriors,” prosector Aloke Chakravarty told the curt in Boston, according to the Associated Press.

“He wanted to terrorise this country. He wanted to punish America for what it was doing to his people.”

Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev involved in a firefight with police

The jury has to decided whether or not Mr Tsarnaev, 21, was responsible for the 2013 attack that killed three people and injured 264 others and for later shooting dead a police officer. Prosecutors have alleged that the young man of Chechen origin carried out the bomb attacks with his brother, who was shot dead in a gun fight with police

By contrast, his lawyers have said that while the young man carried out the attack, it was done so out of a sense of subservience to his elder brother, 26-year-old Tamerlan.

If the jury members find Mr Tsarnaev' guilty, they will then be asked to consider the possible punishments and the option of the death penalty. The young man’s lawyers would push for him to be sentenced to be life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Lawyers Judy Clarke and David Bruck have said Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was under the strong influence of his brother

The AP said that on Monday, jurors watched video of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev standing with a backpack in the crowd at the marathon's finish line minutes before the blasts that killed restaurant manager Krystle Campbell, 29, Chinese exchange student Lingzi Lu, 23, and 8-year-old Martin Richard.

If he is found guilty, Mr Tsarnaev could testify during the sentencing phase of his trial, legal experts have said.