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Friends Of Boston Marathon Bomber Sentenced To Prison

BOSTON (CBS/AP) - Two friends of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were sentenced to serve at least three years in prison on Friday.

Robel Phillipos
Robel Phillipos leaves federal court, Oct. 28, 2014. (WBZ-TV)

On Friday afternoon, Tsarnaev's friend, Robel Phillipos, was sentenced to 36 months in prison. Former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis had written a letter of support for Phillipos as a judge prepared to sentence him for lying to the FBI days after the 2013 bombings.

Dukakis, a friend of Phillipos' family, testified during his trial. In a letter to the judge, Dukakis said he "can't understand why justice would be served by incarcerating him."

Prosecutors were seeking a 63-month sentence for Phillipos. However, Woodlock did not understand why the prosecution was seeking that specific sentence.

WBZ-TV's Ken MacLeod tweeted "Judge struggling with why feds want 63 months for Phillipos -- but only 30 (months) for Tamerlan friend (Khairullozhon) Matanov who destroyed computer files."

Woodlock asked to hear from Phillipos, but his attorney said that he did not recommend his client to speak because of a possible appeal.

The judge says Phillipos has until July 24 to turn himself in to U.S. Marshals.

The sentence given to Phillipos was the most lenient penalty imposed on Tsarnaev's three college friends who went to his dorm room hours after the FBI publicly released photos of him and his brother as suspects in the attack.

Earlier in the day, Azamat Tazhayakov was sentenced to 42 months in prison. He was convicted of obstruction of justice and conspiracy for removing Tsarnaev's backpack and laptop computer from his dorm room with another friend.

Prosecutors had recommended a 4-year sentence for Tazhayakov. He was given credit for time served, and will spend another year-and-a-half behind bars.

Tazhayakov tearfully apologized to the people of Boston and to his family for his actions. He also denounced Tsarnaev's decision to bomb the marathon, saying it made him sick.

Azamat Tazhayakov
Azamat Tazhayakov (WBZ-TV)

But Woodlock said Tazhayakov had committed a "very serious crime."

"He had an opportunity to do the right thing. He didn't...For that, he must pay a price," the judge said.

One juror on the case said Tazhayakov deserved a much stiffer penalty - 10 years in prison.

Video: Juror Says Marathon Bomber's Friend Got Off Easy

"I thought he got off very easy. He could've prevented MIT, police officer being shot possibly, if he spoke up," David Archibauld told WBZ-TV. "The FBI would've had a good idea who they were looking for.

Dias Kadyrbayev
Dias Kadyrbayev and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. (Photo credit: U.S. Attorney's Office)

Another of Tsarnaev's friends, Dias Kadyrbayev, was sentenced to six years in prison on Tuesday.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Carl Stevens reports:

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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