Sources: Suspected Bomber's Family Received $100K+ in Public Benefits
The family of the suspected Boston Marathon bombers reportedly received over $100,000 worth of state, local and federal benefits over the past decade.
Sources told News Center 5 in Boston that they had seen 500 pages of documents and that the Tsarnaev family received "every conceivable public benefit available out there."
According to the report, the House Committee on Post Audit and Oversight in Massachusetts is in the process of reviewing documents from various state agencies that may have doled out benefits to the Tsarnaev family since 2002.
Those who received public benefits included the parents of the two suspected bombers, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar, Tamerlan's widow Katherine Russell, and Tamerlan and Russell's child.
"I am concerned that the taxpayers and victims here may have been funding terrorists," Massachusetts state Representative Shaunna O'Connell, a Republican, said. "People have a right to know if that's the case and they have the right to know immediately."
The family reportedly received Medicaid, food stamps (SNAP), and various forms of cash assistance. And Tamerlan reportedly benefited from Social Security disability benefits in addition to Section 8 housing through his parents and his wife, Katherine.
According to the report, "neither of the Tsarnaev brothers ever was a direct recipient of welfare benefits," but both brothers received assistance as members of their parents' household because their parents were "eligible for benefits because they were legal, non-citizen residents who were granted asylum status" while the brothers were "residing legally in the country."
A letter written by Stacey Monahan, the interim commissioner of the state Department of Transitional Assistance, noted the parents of the suspected bombers received food stamps from 2002 to 2004 and from August 2009 to December 2011. Further, the father "received cash welfare benefits for three months in 2003, and from August 2009 to June 2010."
Tamerlan's wife was also "granted both SNAP and cash assistance for families with dependent children from September 2011 to November 2012," while she was living with Tamerlan and when Tamerlan reportedly was travelling abroad. Tamerlan reportedly went to Russia in January of 2012 and did not return until July of that year.
Breitbart News reporter Michael Patrick Leahy has also extensively investigated the benefits the Tsarnaevs may have received and, in the process, has been unable to find any evidence that Tamerlan was ever gainfully employed during the decade he lived in the United States.