The brother of an Islamic State-inspired terrorist who killed more than a dozen people in San Bernardino is scheduled to appear before a federal judge in Riverside on Monday to respond to a request for his bail to be revoked, which would require him to be incarcerated until he’s sentenced this fall in an immigration fraud case.
Syed Raheel Farook, 32, pleaded guilty in January 2017 to conspiracy to commit immigration fraud in connection with a sham marriage involving his wife’s sister.
Since his arrest more than two years ago, Farook has been free on bond. However, agents from U.S. Pretrial Services filed a request on April 12 with U.S. District Judge Jesus Bernal, asking that his bond be revoked because the defendant violated one of the terms of his restricted release — specifically, taking an overdose of medication in an apparent suicide attempt, according to court records.
The filing states that between March 28 and March 30, Farook took an undisclosed number of “psychotropic” pills, resulting in hospitalization and a mental health evaluation. He was released from care on April 2, according to agents.
The Corona man is slated to appear with his attorney in U.S. District Court on Monday afternoon to argue against revocation, which would mean going to federal lockup in San Bernardino until his Sept. 24 sentencing hearing.
Farook is facing a five-year prison sentence.
His brother, 28-year-old Sayeed Rizwan Farook, carried out the Dec. 2, 2015, terrorist attack at the Inland Regional Center with his wife, 27-year-old Tashfeen Malik, killing 14 and injuring 22. The two jihadis were killed a few hours later during a gun battle with police.
In the ensuing investigation, FBI agents uncovered a marriage fraud scheme that culminated in indictments in April 2016 against Syed Farook, his wife, Tatiana Farook, 32, and her sister, Mariya Chernykh, 27, of Ontario.
The threesome conspired to obtain immigration benefits for Chernykh, a Russian citizen who entered into a bogus marriage with Enrique Marquez Jr. of Riverside, a confidant of Sayeed Rizwan Farook.
Marquez last year admitted one count each of providing material support to terrorists and making false statements in the acquisition of firearms for supplying Sayeed Farook and Malik with the semiautomatic rifles that they used to perpetrate the IRC killing spree.
Marquez is slated to be sentenced on July 13.
According to federal authorities, the Farooks engaged in the conspiracy by standing as witnesses at Marquez and Chernykh’s wedding, taking staged family photos of the couple and creating a joint checking account for them, as well as a back-dated lease that implied they shared a marital residence.
Marquez and Chernykh signed immigration documents, under penalty of perjury, falsely stating that they both lived at the same address.
Investigators said Marquez received money from Chernykh as part of the arrangement, while living with another man in Ontario.
Chernykh, who is also free on bond, last year pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy, perjury and making false statements to federal officials. She’s set to be sentenced on Nov. 5. Tatiana Farook, free on bond as well, last year admitted a conspiracy count and is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 22.
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