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Enrique Marquez Pleads Not Guilty To Federal Terrorism Charges

Enrique Marquez, the 24-year-old man accused of providing two guns used in the San Bernardino attack, has pleaded not guilty to federal charges.

When he appeared Wednesday at his arraignment in federal court in Riverside, Calif., Marquez spoke only to briefly answer Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym's questions, the Los Angeles Times reports. The newspaper adds: "When she asked how he would plead, he said simply, 'Not guilty.' "

Marquez faces five charges, including conspiracy to support terrorism.

That charge stems from investigations dating back five years. Marquez was indicted by a federal grand jury, accused of conspiring with one of the two San Bernardino shooters, Syed Rizwan Farook, to provide material support — such as weapons and explosives — to terrorists in 2011 and 2012, though no attacks were carried out then.

Marquez, who was once Farook's neighbor, also is charged with making a false statement to investigators about the purchase of two assault-style rifles that Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, used to kill 14 people on Dec. 2, 2015, at the Inland Regional Center. Both attackers were killed in a shootout with police.

According to the criminal complaint, Marquez bought a Smith & Wesson rifle in November 2011 for about $740 and then purchased another rifle for about $760 three months later. He portrayed himself as the buyer when really the weapons were for Farook, the complaint says.

Marquez was also indicted on charges of marriage fraud and making a false statement on immigration paperwork. Those charges relate to an alleged sham marriage to a member of Farook's extended family.

If convicted of all charges, Marquez faces up to 50 years in prison, according to The Associated Press, which says a trial has been set for Feb. 23.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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