The man who bought the rifles: Who is Enrique Marquez?

10 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Straw Buyers’ Of Guns Break The Law — And Often Get Away With It.

A garage door of Enrique Marquez’s home is seen broken in a recent FBI raid, Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015, in Riverside, Calif. The next-door neighbor of San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook, who allegedly helped him build his arsenal, may have been involved himself in an attack plot cut short three years ago.The FBI is investigating whether Syed Rizwan Farook and a neighbor intended to commit an act of terror in about 2012 and then got spooked, a senior law enforcement official said Wednesday.The man who reportedly purchased a pair of assault-style rifles used by terrorist gunman Syed Farook and his wife in a mass execution was also tied to the killer’s family by marriage, documents show.The former neighbor who supplied the assault-style weapons to the San Bernardino killers is related to them by marriage and recently told a friend that there were Muslims nearby “ready to go haywire,” according to reports.

According to senior American officials cited by The New York Times, Enrique Marquez not only purchased the two assault rifles used in last week’s massacre, but was an Islam convert who had discussed plans to carry on an attack as far back as 2012. Enrique Marquez was wed on Nov. 29, 2014, to Russian bride Mariya Chernykh — whose sister Tatiana was married three years earlier to Syed’s brother Raheel Farook. Buying guns from licensed dealers for someone else is illegal. “Straw purchasers” break the law by fraudulently filling out a form that says they’re the actual buyer, but they’re actually buying the gun for another person — someone who might be avoiding a background check. “You have to get into the mind of the person who’s buying the gun and filling out the form,” says Michael Bouchard, a retired assistant director for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. “The tough part about this is, and the reason straw purchasers rarely get prosecuted is, because it’s in the eyes of the beholder.” For example, says Daniel Webster, head of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, someone could claim ” ‘I have no idea how that person got that gun.

Stone, a friend of Marquez from the local punk scene, told ABC News that his friend had told him something a few months ago that he now sees in a new light. “He said something along the lines of, ‘There’s a lot of Muslims in our own back yard, just ready to go haywire and attack,’” Stone said. “And we didn’t think nothing of it. And if there’s a conviction, straw buyers face penalties as high as 10 years in prison and $250,000 in fines. “The law says that somebody could go to jail for up to 10 years and face a fine of up to $250,000.

As time went on, Marquez started attending mosque less and less frequently, the facilities manager told the Times he hadn’t seen Marquez in about three years. Employees at a Walmart in Corona, Calif., 20 minutes by car from Riverside, said Marquez has been working there as an asset protection and customer specialist for about six months. It was during these communications that they began discussing jihadist thoughts, long before Malik traveled to the United States and they got married. “And online…as early as the end as 2013, they were talking to each other about jihad and martyrdom before they became engaged and then married and lived together in the United States,” Comey said during his testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Farook and Malik each carried one of the rifles when they fired dozens of bullets at the helpless revelers attending a holiday party in San Bernardino, Calif. This radicalization appears to predate the rise of the Islamic State, the terrorist group that in 2014 formally declared a caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria. “We’re working very hard to understand exactly their association and the source of their inspiration,” he said. “We’re also working very hard to understand whether there was anybody else involved with assisting them, with supporting them, with equipping them.” When asked by Sen. Authorities believe the weapons — purchased legally in 2011 or 2012 — were bought by Marquez to keep his friend’s name off the paperwork, reported ABC News. Marquez, who had checked himself into a psychiatric facility after the shooting, was questioned by the feds after they raided his home in Riverside on Saturday. The FBI has labeled the killings a terrorist attack and investigators are also trying to determine if Farook had abandoned plans to launch an attack in 2012, according to two people familiar with the investigation who were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), a presidential candidate, if the marriage between Malik and Farook was arranged by a terrorist organization, Comey said he didn’t know yet. Marquez, whose security guard license in California expired last year, had worked at Wal-Mart since May, but has since been fired, spokesman Brian Nick said. He was drunk, so I don’t know.” Farook withdrew $10,000 and then transferred an additional $15,000 to an account believed to be tied to his live-in mother, Rafia Farook, the report stated citing an anonymous source close to the investigation.

The ceremony took place at the Islamic Society of Corona-Norco, according to the marriage license, though the mosque’s facility manager denied it occurred there. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Sunday, days after the woman’s driver’s license was shared on national television during a media swarm into the family’s home.

But friends said they knew little about Farook’s wife, and many weren’t even aware that the couple had a daughter born in May 2015; their baby was placed in the custody of child protective services after the attack. Viviana Ramirez, 23, a fellow student with Marquez at Riverside Community College, told the Los Angeles Times they bonded over a mutual desire to join the military. Relatively little is known about Malik, who was born in Pakistan but spent at least some time in Saudi Arabia, where her father relocated more than two decades ago. Raheel Farook is a Navy veteran, serving from 2003 to 2007 and earning the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, among other awards.

Tommy Lopez, who said he became friends with Marquez after meeting at a punk rock show seven months ago, said he never talked about his wife and was not religious. The neighbor, Enrique Marquez, legally purchased the rifles — semiautomatic AR-15s manufactured by DPMS and Smith & Wesson — in California, officials say.

Yousuf Bhaghani, a senior official at the center, said in an interview Tuesday that he had not interacted with Marquez but that other members he had spoken with said they recalled him occasionally praying at the mosque four or five years ago. Both Marquez and the bride, Russian-born Mariya Chernykh, list the same home address as Raheel Farook, and Raheel and Tatiana Farook were witnesses to the couple’s marriage. John Galletta, a shooting instructor the Riverside Magnum Range, said that Farook had come to the range with an AR-15 rifle on the Sunday and Monday before the attacks took place.

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