Boston bombings suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev sought out a different - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

Boston bombings suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev sought out a different name

Posted: Updated:

(CNN) -- A few months before the Boston bombings, the suspected mastermind of the terror attack, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, wanted to change his name, a U.S. government official told CNN Wednesday.

Tsarnaev, who was shot and killed in a massive manhunt, made an interesting choice for his new name.

He wrote that he wanted to switch his first name to Muaz, the last name of Emir Muaz -- a Dagestan insurgent fighting in the Caucasus region of Russia, the official added. Muaz was killed in 2009.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the big brother of accused bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, filed that request with U.S. immigration on January 23, 2013, as part of his application to become a naturalized U.S. citizen. His brother, Dzhokhar, had already become a naturalized citizen.

"We don't know why," the official says. "There's no evidence why he wanted to change his name."

Whether it was another indication of his radicalization that led to the marathon bombing is speculation, according to the source.

The story was first reported in the Wednesday edition of the Los Angeles Times.

The year before the April 15, 2013, bombing, Tamerlan Tsarnaev traveled to the restive Dagestan region, hoping to meet with Canadian boxer-turned-jihadist William Plotnikov. Russian troops killed Plotnikov in July 2012 while Tsarnaev was in the region. It's unclear whether the two men ever came face to face.

Tsarnaev flew out of Dagestan two days after Plotnikov was killed and investigators have been looking into whether Tsarnaev left because of Plotnikov's death, according to another source briefed on the investigation.

Authorities also have been investigating whether Tsarnaev had any contact with another militant, Mahmoud Mansur Nidal. The 18-year-old was killed by Russian forces in May 2012 during a gun battle in Makhachkala, Dagestan's capital.

As part of the naturalization process, a form requires a signature acknowledging the applicant will swear allegiance to the United State and might be required to serve in the military. Instead, the official says Tsarnaev printed his first and last name, but crossed out "Tamerlan" and changed it to "Muaz."

According to the website www.thinkbabynames.com, the name Tamerlan is derived from Tamerlane, the feared 14th-century warrior who conquered parts of the Middle East and Central Asia. Tamerlane, the name used in the epic Edgar Allan Poe poem, is now more commonly called Timur by historians.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • In somber ceremony, Dutch welcome home first remains of MH17 victims

    In somber ceremony, Dutch welcome home first remains of MH17 victims

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 12:47 PM EDT2014-07-23 16:47:58 GMT
    CNNCNN
    (CNN) -- A lone bugler sounding the traditional military farewell "Last Post" marked the arrival Wednesday in the Netherlands of the first dead from the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.More >>
    (CNN) -- A lone bugler sounding the traditional military farewell "Last Post" marked the arrival Wednesday in the Netherlands of the first dead from the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.More >>
  • Washington family says dog reunited with Texas family belongs to them

    Washington family says dog reunited with Texas family belongs to them

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 10:25 AM EDT2014-07-23 14:25:07 GMT
    It was a joyous reunion for one family and a devastating loss for another. The Miller family of Tyler lost their beloved Maltese named Reese seven years ago. The little white dog escaped while the Millers were visiting family in Balch Springs.More >>
    It was a joyous reunion for one family and a devastating loss for another. The Miller family of Tyler lost their beloved Maltese named Reese seven years ago. The little white dog escaped while the Millers were visiting family in Balch Springs.More >>
  • ‘Operation Coyote’ targets human smuggling networks

    ‘Operation Coyote’ targets human smuggling networks

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 4:43 PM EDT2014-07-22 20:43:13 GMT
    photo: (ICE)photo: (ICE)
    WASHINGTON (KYTX) — In a news conference Tuesday, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, joined by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Customs and Border Protection Border Patrol and U.S. Deputy Attorney General announced the progress of ongoing enforcement efforts by ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the U.S. Department of Justice to target human smuggling networks in the Rio Grande Valley.More >>
    WASHINGTON (KYTX) — In a news conference Tuesday, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, joined by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Customs and Border Protection Border Patrol and U.S. Deputy Attorney General announced the progress of ongoing enforcement efforts by ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the U.S. Department of Justice to target human smuggling networks in the Rio Grande Valley.More >>
Powered by WorldNow

CBS19, MYTX & KCEB
2211 ESE Loop 323
Tyler, TX 75701
Phone (903) 581-2211
Fax (903) 581-5769

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KYTX. All Rights Reserved. Users of this site agree to the Terms of Service, Privacy Notice/Your California Privacy Rights, and Ad Choices.