30-year-old Fazliddin Kurbanov was arrested May 16 when FBI agents raided his Boise apartment, saying the suspect conspired to use a weapon of mass destruction and made regular shopping trips to purchase bomb-making materials.
But two Boise public defenders, Richard Rubin and Thomas Monaghan. who had initially been assigned to represent Kurbanov, told a federal court judge that due to the federal sequestration and its financial squeeze on their resources, they they should be removed from the case. Rubin told the Associated Press that federal budget cuts had reduced the budget of his office by 10 percent.
The AP's John Miller reports that a federal judge has now appointed Charles Peterson to take over Kurbanov's defense. The AP reports that Peterson was part of the defense team that helped win Randy Weaver's acquittal on charges that he murdered a federal marshall during the Ruby Ridge standoff in 1992. Peterson also helped to defend a Saudi Arabian University of Idaho student was was acquitted of using his computer skills to support terrorism following the September 11, 2001, attacks.
Kurbanov has pleaded not guilty to charges including that he helped teach people to build bombs which targeted public transportation.