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Judge Denies Tsarnaev Lawyers' Attempt To Delay Trial After Paris Attacks

His attorneys filed a motion to delay jury selection in the trial of the accused Boston bomber, citing "extraordinary prejudice flowing" from the events in France. The judge denied the motion on Wednesday.

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Dzhokhar Tsarnaev filed a motion Tuesday to delay jury selection in his trial by at least one month in light of the attacks in France.

AP / Jane Flavell Collins

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev appears at jury selection for the Boston Marathon bombing trial.

The judge denied the motion on Wednesday, the U.S. Attorney's office said on Twitter.

In Tsarnaev matter: defendant's motion to suspend jury empanelment denied by judge.

U.S. Attorney MA@DMAnews1Follow

In Tsarnaev matter: defendant's motion to suspend jury empanelment denied by judge.

9:24 AM - 14 Jan 15ReplyRetweetFavorite

Judge O'Toole said his review of prospective jurors' questionnaires "confirmed, rather then undermined, my judgement that a fair and impartial jury can and will be chosen."

The motion points to supposed parallels the press drew between the attacks in Paris and Boston, including that the suspects were brothers, allegedly influenced by the teachings of radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, described as "home-grown" terrorists, and carried out attacks on Western cities.

The motion cites multiple media reports about the Paris attack and quotes former Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis from USA Today calling the similarities between the two attacks "shocking."

The motion is the defense's third attempt to delay the Boston bombing trial. Tsarnaev's team was successful in getting the start of the proceedings delayed from November 2014 to January 15. Another motion to bump the January start date to September was denied by the judge.

Individual juror questioning is scheduled to begin Thursday, Jan. 15, in Boston. At least 300 of the 1,350 prospective jurors who filled out questionnaires during jury selection last week have been moved on to the questioning phase by the judge.

Read the motion filed by Tsarnaev's attorneys Tuesday seeking the delay.

Michael Hayes is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Mike Hayes at

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