CHELSEA — The man accused of planting two bombs in Chelsea last year won’t be tried in another state, despite his attorneys’ concerns that a Manhattan jury could be biased by “prejudicial” media coverage.
Manhattan Federal Judge Richard Berman on Monday denied a request by the lawyers for Ahmad Khan Rahimi to transfer their client’s trial from Manhattan to another venue, court records show.
Rahimi’s lawyers had argued their client would be more likely to have a fair trial in a state like Vermont or in Washington D.C., where there was less coverage of the Sept. 17 explosion and subsequent arrest.
“The court has little or no doubt that a fair and impartial jury can be impaneled in this case, and that the defendant Rahimi will receive a fair trial,” Berman said in court, according to the Daily News.
Publicity prior to the trial wouldn’t warrant a venue change, he added.
Rahimi faces charges including using a weapon of mass destruction in connection with the explosion on West 23rd Street last year that injured more than 30 people.
His trial is expected to start at the beginning of October, a spokeswoman for the Manhattan U.S. Attorney's office said last month.
Rahimi's lawyers didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.