Federal Charges For Boston Bombing Suspect

Dzhokar Tsarnaev boston

(Boston, MA- CBS) Boston Marathon bombings suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was formally charged in his hospital bed Monday, and charges have been sealed until his first appearance before a judge, CBS News has confirmed.

CNN reports the charge is ‘conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction.’

A magistrate judge went to the hospital to conduct the initial appearance, an official at the Federal Courthouse in Boston confirmed to CBS News.

The White House said the 19-year-old Tsarnaev will not be tried as an enemy combatant in a military tribunal but he will be prosecuted in the federal court system.

Tsarnaev is a naturalized U.S. citizen. White House spokesman Jay Carney said Tsarnaev said that under U.S. law, American citizens cannot be tried in military commissions.

He said that since Sept. 11, 2001, the federal court system has been used to convict and incarcerate hundreds of terrorists.

Tsarnaev is conscious and responding in writing to authorities, CBS News correspondent Bob Orr reports. Officials did not reveal further details on what they are asking, or what his responses are.

Tsarnaev was in serious condition Sunday, two days after being pulled bloody and wounded from a tarp-covered boat in a Watertown backyard. The capture came at the end of a tense day-long manhunt that began with his 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan, dying in a gun battle with police.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev remains hospitalized under heavy guard. He is being treated at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where 11 victims of the bombing were still hospitalized.

Officials say Tsarnaev is recuperating from a bullet wound in the leg and in the neck, rendering him unable to speak. They could not comment on whether or not the neck wound was self-inflicted.

The twin bombings killed three people and wounded more than 180.