**Isn’t this exactly the same timing the defense asked for in the very beginning**
The high-powered legal team for accused terrorist Dzhokhar Tsarnaev wants to push back the start of the blockbuster Boston Marathon bombing trial nearly a year, according to a motion filed today in U.S. District Court in Boston.
Throughout the 80-page motion, Tsarnaev’s lawyers argued that their client’s case, set to begin Nov. 3, is being rushed to trial and said the scope of the investigation has “overwhelmed the ability of defense counsel to evaluate and respond to the government’s case in the time allotted.”
"The trial in this case is currently scheduled to begin just 16 months after the defendant was indicted. This 16-month period is one-half the median preparation time that federal courts have allowed defendants on trial for their lives over the past decade and would bring this case to trial faster than 103 of the 119 federal capital trials to get underway since 2004," the motion read.
Tsarnaev’s lawyers asked that the trial begin on or after Sept. 1, 2015, and pointed to the massive amount of evidence gathered during the investigation in their request for additional time to prepare their case.
"The Boston Marathon bombing has been investigated by more than 1,000 FBI and other agents from additional federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies … and by at least five separate committees of the United States Congress," the motion read. "The government has gradually produces some 6.7 terabytes of discovery, including more than 100,000 pages of witness statements, reports, photographs and scientific tests produced in scanned formats; thousands of items of physical evidence; and - perhaps most daunting of all - thousands of gigabytes of digital evidence."
Tsarnaev’s brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was killed in a shootout with police several days after the April 15, 2013, Boston Marathon bombings that killed three and injured 260.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has pleaded not guilty to 30 federal charges and is slated to go on trial Nov. 3. If convicted, he could be put to death. His defense team is also pushing to have the trial moved to Washington, D.C., arguing it cannot find an impartial jury in Boston.
"We recognize that the government and many members of the public, especially in the Boston area, may want the trial to begin quickly," the motion read. "But it is critically important that any trial be fair, which means giving both sides, not just the government, enough time to uncover and present all relevant evidence."
The motion now goes before the judge for oral arguments. No date has been set yet for that request.