Woman accused of sending ricin in letter to White House, arrested on US-Canada border at New York

The letter was intercepted at a government screening facility and a preliminary investigation indicated it tested positive for the highly potent toxin

The Associated Press September 21, 2020 13:45:20 IST
Woman accused of sending ricin in letter to White House, arrested on US-Canada border at New York

File image of White House. AP

Washington: A woman suspected of sending an envelope containing the poison ricin, which was addressed to White House, has been arrested at the New York-Canada border, three law enforcement officials told The Associated Press.

The letter had been intercepted earlier this week before it reached the White House. The woman was taken into custody by US Customs and Border Protection officers at the Peace Bridge border crossing near Buffalo and is expected to face federal charges, the officials said Sunday. Her name was not immediately released.

The letter addressed to the White House appeared to have originated in Canada, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have said. It was intercepted at a government facility that screens mail addressed to the White House and President Donald Trump and a preliminary investigation indicated it tested positive for ricin, according to the officials.

The officials were not authorized to discuss the ongoing investigation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

There have been several prior instances in which US officials have been targeted with ricin sent through the mail.

A Navy veteran was arrested in 2018 and confessed to sending envelopes to Trump and members of his administration that contained the substance from which ricin is derived. The letters were intercepted, and no one was hurt.

In 2014, a Mississippi man was sentenced to 25 years in prison after sending letters dusted with ricin to President Barack Obama and other officials.

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