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Ricin suspect linked to White House package to appear in NY court Tues

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Here’s the latest for Monday September 21st: Trump says he’ll pick new Supreme Court justice soon; Ricin suspect arrested on US-Canada border; Tropical Storm Beta lashes Texas coast; National Cathedral tolls bell for coronavirus victims.

AP Domestic

A woman suspected of mailing a package containing the poison ricin to the White House is now expected to appear in a New York court Tuesday, following her arrest at the U.S.-Canada border, authorities said.

The suspect was taken into custody by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Peace Bridge border crossing near Buffalo on Sunday and is expected to face federal charges in connection with the package which was intercepted in the past week, a law enforcement official said.

The letter is believed to have been mailed from Canada.

An earlier court appearance, originally scheduled for Monday, is now set to take place at 2 p.m. Tuesday. 

In a weekend statement, the FBI described the missive as “a suspicious letter received at a U.S. government mail facility.”

Mail addressed to the White House is screened at an off-site location.

Ricin explained: Just how deadly is it, how does it kill?

Ricin, a poison drawn from the husks of castor beans, has surfaced in other plots targeting President Donald Trump, President Barack Obama and other officials. According to the Centers for Disease Control, exposure to ricin through inhalation, ingestion or injection can lead to death.

In 2018, a federal grand jury returned a seven-count indictment against a Utah man, alleging that he threatened Trump and other administration officials in letters, some of which contained the natural ingredients used to make ricin. 

In that case, a series of suspicious letters were addressed to Trump, then-Defense Secretary James Mattis, FBI Director Christopher Wray, CIA Director Gina Haspel and others.

In 2001, following the the 9/11 attacks, another form of bio-terrorism shook the country when letters containing anthrax were sent to congressional and media offices.

Those attacks killed five people and sickened more than a dozen others.

A microbiologist at the Army’s elite infectious disease laboratory in Fort Detrick, Maryland, Bruce Ivins, committed suicide in 2008, as federal authorities were preparing to charge him in the attacks.

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/09/21/ricin-suspect-linked-white-house-package-appear-ny-court/5851373002/

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