Boston Bombing Prosecution Team

NAAUSA congratulates the prosecution team of William Weinreb, Nadine Pellegrini, Aloke Chakravarty, and Steven Mellin on the successful prosecution of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev for the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Tsarnaev was found guilty by the jury of all 30 counts, charging him with the possession and use of explosives and firearms. His heinous actions resulted in the deaths of three spectators and another 264 spectators requiring medical treatment. At least 16 lost limbs, with three losing more than one limb. Following the bombing, Tsarnaev and his brother killed an MIT policeman, carjacked an SUV, and initiated an exchange of gunfire with the police in Watertown, Massachusetts, resulting in the severe injury of an MBTA police officer.

AUSA Weinreb, who led the prosecution team, delivered an opening statement, which will forever serve as an example to prosecutors. The transcript of the opening statement can be found here. Weinreb is an Assistant U.S Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, and is the deputy unit chief for the office’s anti-terrorism and national security unit. AUSA Weinreb also prosecuted Aftab Ali Khan, who helped fund the failed Times Square bombing in May 2010. Ali Khan pleaded guilty to unlicensed money transmitting and immigration document fraud.

NAAUSA member, Nadine Pellegrini, is an AUSA with the District of Massachusetts. She is the former Chief of the Major Crimes Unit and a member of the Antiterrorism Unit. She joined the US Attorney’s Office in 1991 and is considered an expert in wildlife protection. Prior to joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, she was the Chief of Special Prosecutions for the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office.

Pellegrini led the prosecution in presenting its case for a death sentence to the jury. Following 14 hours of deliberation, the jury agreed, recommending the defendant’s execution.

Aloke Chakravarty is an AUSA with the District of Massachusetts. Chakravarty delivered a moving closing statement at the guilt phase of the trial, painting a vivid picture of the terrorism wrought by the defendant. He focuses primarily on cases involving national security and human rights. He regularly leads outreach activities in the District. He is a recipient of the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Access to Justice Award and the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service. His past cases include the trial of Tarek Mehanna, the Sudbury man convicted in 2011 on terrorism charges.

Steven Mellin, a former AUSA in the Eastern District of Virginia, is a member of the Department’s Capital Case section. Mellin presented the initial closing statement in the death penalty phase, deftly anticipating the defense’s closing arguments.


The National Association of Assistant United States Attorneys (NAAUSA) is the voice of Assistant United States Attorneys in the Department of Justice and Congress helping safeguard justice and promoting the interests of AUSAs.

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