Enrique Marquez Jr. pleads not guilty to federal terror charges
The man accused of providing two rifles used in the Dec. 2 mass shooting in San Bernardino pleaded not guilty to charges against him in federal court Wednesday.
Enrique Marquez Jr. was indicted last week by a federal grand jury on charges of conspiring to provide material support to terrorists, lying about the rifle purchases, marriage fraud and lying on a visa application.
Marquez was at work during the Dec. 2 attack carried out by Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, prosecutors have said in court filings. But he is accused of plotting with Farook in 2011 and 2012 to carry out attacks at Riverside City College and on the 91 Freeway.
Marquez appeared briefly for an arraignment in federal court in Riverside on Wednesday morning.
He spoke only to answer mostly yes or no questions asked of him by Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym.
When she asked how he would plead he said simply, “Not guilty.”
According to a complaint filed by prosecutors, Marquez bought two rifles for Farook as they prepared to carry out those attacks.
In November 2011, Marquez bought a Smith & Wesson rifle for a little more than $740, according to the complaint, and three months later he bought another rifle for about $760.
Both times Marquez illegally concealed the fact that the guns were meant for Farook when he signed papers saying that he was the buyer, prosecutors said.
In addition to the rifles, Marquez also bought a container of smokeless powder used to make pipe bombs that Farook left in the conference room where the Dec. 2 shooting took place, according to the court filings. The bombs did not explode.
Marquez and Farook met about 10 years ago when they were neighbors in Riverside.
Marquez told investigators he abandoned his plot with Farook and distanced himself from him in 2012.
Fourteen people were killed and 22 were injured when Farook and Malik opened fire at a gathering of San Bernardino County employees at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino.
If convicted of all charges, Marquez faces up to 50 years in prison.
MORE ON SAN BERNARDINO
The stories shaping California
Get up to speed with our Essential California newsletter, sent six days a week.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.