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Rep. Pete King: Too early to say Boston suspects acted alone

“I don’t see how we can accept that,” said King on CNN’s “Starting Point.” “It may end up being the truth, but this is a person who is a mass murderer. He’s a person who barely can speak, speak at all. I don’t see why he would be giving up any accomplices anyhow or talk about any connections his brother might have had in Chechnya or Russia.”

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Reports say suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has told investigators that he and his deceased brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev were self-radicalized by watching jihadist videos on YouTube. But King said investigators still needed to probe the possibility that the two had help as they planned the bombings that killed three and injured dozens.

“This is an investigation which I think could go on for days, weeks and months as we drove down on every aspect of their contacts,” he said.

King cited reports that the two had purchased fireworks, saying many details were still unresolved.

“Where did they keep them during the last several months? Did anyone else know about it? Did anyone else ask why they were buying them?” he asked.

“There are so many questions here that, to say he acted alone or his brother acted alone, it’s much too early to accept that.”

King also said he would continue to investigate if rules governing the FBI needed to change to give them more latitude to pursue investigations of possible terror attack plots.

The FBI spoke to Tamerlan Tsarnaev in 2011 after Russian authorities flagged him over possible ties to Islamist groups. But the agency was unaware of a 2012 trip he subsequently took to Russia and closed their investigation.

“For instance if it’s true that they believed they could not keep an investigation open because there was not enough information, that it could be closed and reopened later on, I think we have to get into that,” said King. “Maybe the FBI should be given more flexibility.”

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told lawmakers on Tuesday that while her department was aware of the trip, the FBI was not, also raising questions about the cooperation between law enforcement and intelligence agencies.