Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 5 August 2015

Secret burial of Boston bombings suspect 'appears to be legal'

Published 12/05/2013 | 19:45

A flower is placed on the alleged burial site of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev
A flower is placed on the alleged burial site of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev
Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev was shot dead by police (AP)
Medical workers aid injured people at the 2013 Boston Marathon following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013
In this image from video provided by WBZ TV, spectators and runners run from what was described as twin explosions that shook the finish line of the Boston Marathon, Monday, April 15, 2013, in Boston.
Investigators at one of the blast sites (AP)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A man is loaded into an ambulance after he was injured by one of two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon near Copley Square on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
This photo provided by Bruce Mendelsohn shows the scene after two explosions occurred during the 2013 Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. Two explosions shattered the euphoria of the Boston Marathon finish line on Monday, sending authorities out on the course to carry off the injured while the stragglers were rerouted away from the smoking site of the blasts. (AP Photo/ Bruce Mendelsohn) MANDATORY CREDIT
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners react near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners react near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Two blood stained feet of a man hangs outside an ambulance outside a medical tent located near the finish of the 117th Boston Marathon after two bombs exploded on the marathon route on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Members of the bomb squad investigate a suspicious item on the road as runners pass near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A runner embraces another woman on the marathon route near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A runner reacts near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A member of the bomb squad investigates a suspicious item on the road near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: State police guard an area near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A member of the bomb squad investigates a suspicious item on the road near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A man is loaded into an ambulance after he was injured by one of two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon near Copley Square on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A woman looks on as runners pass near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: People react to a suspicious package on the corner of Dartmouth and Stuart St after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
An unidentified Boston Marathon runner, center, is reunited with loved ones near Copley Square following an explosion in Boston Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Emergency personnel take postion at the finish line after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A runner sits near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners gather near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: People walk near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Carlos Arredondo, who was at the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon when two explosives detonated, leaves the scene on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A police officer directs people around the finish line at the corner of Boylston Street and Massachusetts Avenue after two explosives detonated during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners and police gather near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
An unidentified Boston Marathon runner leaves the course crying near Copley Square following an explosion in Boston Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
Jeff Bauman being helped from the carnage after the explosion
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: People gather near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Police and runners stand near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A woman looks on as runners pass near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners talk to Boston Police near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: People rush out of the way on the corner of Stuart and Dartmouth St., near the finish line after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A woman looks at the blood on her hands as she is loaded into an ambulance after being injured after two bombs exploded on the marathon route on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
One of the blast sites on Boylston Street near the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon is investigated by a person in a protective suit in the wake of two blasts in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Blood from victims covers the sidewalk on Boylston Street, at the site of an explosion during the 2013 Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. At the right foreground is a folding chair with the design of an American flag on the cover. Two explosions shattered the euphoria of the Boston Marathon finish line on Monday, sending authorities out on the course to carry off the injured while the stragglers were rerouted away from the smoking site of the blasts. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
President Barack Obama pauses as he begins to speak in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, Monday, April 15, 2013, following the explosions at the Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners listen to directions from a Boston Police officer at the corner of Stuart Street and Dartmouth Street after two explosive devices detonated at the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon.
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 15: U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about today's bombing at the Boston Marathon, April 15, 2013 in Washington, DC. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 15: U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about today's bombing at the Boston Marathon, April 15, 2013 in Washington, DC. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 28 injured after at least two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: The outter perimeter near Massachusetts Avenue and Newbury Street is secured by police after two explosive devices detonated at the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: Runners listen to directions from a Boston Police officer at the corner of Stuart Street and Dartmouth Street after two explosive devices detonated at the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon.
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A swat team arrives at the corner of Stuart Street and Dartmouth Street after two explosive devices detonated at the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon.
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 15: A New York Police Department officer inspects a man's bag in Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan on April 15, 2013 in New York City. The city has announced it will implement heightened security measures in response to today's bombings at the Boston Marathon. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 15: A woman is loaded into an ambulance after he was injured by one of two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon near Copley Square on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Two people are confirmed dead and at least 23 injured after two explosions went off near the finish line to the marathon. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 15: A New York Police Department officer inspects a man's bag in Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan on April 15, 2013 in New York City. The city has announced it will implement heightened security measures in response to today's bombings at the Boston Marathon. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 15: People walk through Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan on April 15, 2013 in New York City. The city has announced it will implement heightened security measures in response to today's bombings at the Boston Marathon. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
People react as an explosion goes off near the finish line of the Boston Marathon (AP)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: A man walks by portable toilets near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 15: A performer is dressed as Lady Liberty in Times Square in Manhattan on April 15, 2013 in New York City. The city has announced it will implement heightened security measures in response to today's bombings at the Boston Marathon. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: Unclaimed finish line bags are viewed near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: A Boston police officer stands near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: Debris and litter cover an empty street near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: A National Guard soldier stands near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: Boston Police stand near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: Unclaimed finish line bags are left near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: A Boston police officer stands near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: Unclaimed food sits near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: A piece of debris rests against a police barricade near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: National Guard soldiers stand near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Three people were killed and at least 144 injured when two bombs exploded at the Boston marathon
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 16: A Boston police officer stands near the scene of a twin bombing at the Boston Marathon, on April 16, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Three people are confirmed dead and at least 141 injured after the explosions went off near the finish line of the marathon yesterday. The bombings at the 116-year-old Boston race, resulted in heightened security across the nation with cancellations of many professional sporting events as authorities search for a motive to the violence. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
A Boston Marathon competitor and Boston police run from the area of an explosion near the finish line in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/MetroWest Daily News, Ken McGagh) MANDATORY CREDIT
Injured people and debris lie on the sidewalk near the Boston Marathon finish line following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/MetroWest Daily News, Ken McGagh) MANDATORY CREDIT
An injured person is helped on the sidewalk near the Boston Marathon finish line following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/MetroWest Daily News, Ken McGagh) MANDATORY CREDIT
Injured people and debris lie on the sidewalk near the Boston Marathon finish line following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/MetroWest Daily News, Ken McGagh) MANDATORY CREDIT
A Los Angeles Sheriffs Counter Terrorism Unit deputy patrols Union Station before the start of Los Angeles Dodgers game in Los Angeles Monday, April 15, 2013. The city increased security following bomb explosions in Boston that killed two people and injured more than 80 near the crowded finish line of the Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
A firefighter tends to an injured man following an explosion near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
This photo provided by Bruce Mendelsohn shows the scene after two explosions occurred during the 2013 Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. Two explosions shattered the euphoria of the Boston Marathon finish line on Monday, sending authorities out on the course to carry off the injured while the stragglers were rerouted away from the smoking site of the blasts. (AP Photo/ Bruce Mendelsohn) MANDATORY CREDIT
One of the blast sites on Boylston Street near the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon is investigated and guarded by police in the wake of two blasts in Boston Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
A Los Angeles Sheriffs Counter Terrorism Unit officer carries an AR-15 assault rifle, as he patrols the entrance to Union Station in Los Angeles Monday, April 15, 2013. The city increased security following bomb explosions in Boston that killed two people and injured more than 80 near the crowded finish line of the Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
An unidentified Boston Marathon runner leaves the course crying near Copley Square following an explosion in Boston Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
A firefighter tends to an injured man following an explosion near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Medical workers aid injured people at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Boston police on bicycles patrol on Commonwealth Avenue following the explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. Two bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon finish line Monday killing two people and injuring dozens. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Police clear the area at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon (AP)
Medical workers aid injured people at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon (AP)
Medical workers aid injured people at the 2013 Boston Marathon (AP)
Medical workers aid injured people at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon (AP)
Police officers react to a second explosion at the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. Two explosions shattered the euphoria of the Boston Marathon finish line on Monday, sending authorities out on the course to carry off the injured while the stragglers were rerouted away from the smoking site of the blasts. (AP Photo/The Boston Globe, John Tlumacki)

The burial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev appears to be legal, police said, after his secret burial in Virginia.

The news that Tsarnaev had been buried on Thursday in a rural Islamic cemetery north of Richmond, hundreds of miles from his Massachusetts home shocked some in the community, including officials who said they had not been informed.

But Caroline County sheriff Tony Lippa said officials had looked at the paperwork and the interment appeared legal. But he warned that his small department lacked the money and staff to provide a round-the-clock presence at the cemetery.

"The Sheriff's Office will offer the same amount of protection - no more and no less - to this site as any other cemetery in Caroline County," Sheriff Lippa said.

The body of Tsarnaev, 26, an ethnic Chechen from Russia, had remained at a Massachusetts undertakers since he was killed on April 19 in a gunfight with police, days after the bombings that killed three people and injured more than 260.

Cemeteries in several states refused to accept the remains and with costs to protect the undertakers mounting, police appealed for help finding a place to bury him.

The woman whose actions led to Tsarnaev being buried in Virginia said the anger from local officials, some cemetery neighbours and online critics had been unpleasant, but she had no regrets.

"I can't pretend it's not difficult to be reviled and maligned," Martha Mullen said. "But any time you can reach across the divide and work with people that are not like you, that's what God calls us to do."

Ms Mullen said she was at a coffee shop when she heard a radio news report about the difficulty finding a burial spot for Tsarnaev.

"My first thought was, Jesus said love your enemies," she said.

"I thought someone ought to do something about this - and I am someone."

Ms Mullen, a mental health counsellor and seminary graduate, sent emails to various faith organisations to see what could be done. She heard back from Islamic Funeral Services of Virginia, which arranged for a funeral plot at the Al-Barzakh cemetery.

"It was an interfaith effort," she said.

Ms Mullen, a member of the United Methodist Church, said she was motivated by her own faith and that she had the full support of her pastor.

"Nobody is without sin," she said. "Certainly this was a horrific act, but he's dead and what happened is between him and God. We just need to bury his body and move forward. People were making an issue and detracting from the healing that needed to take place."

Some local officials have expressed concern that the grave site could become a target for vandals and a shrine for those who sympathise with Tsarnaev.

Tsarnaev's younger brother Dzhokhar was captured hours after the gunfight with police and remains in custody.

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