Utah man charged with ricin threats to White House, Pentagon

(DAILY WIRE) A Utah man has been charged with sending a series of letters threatening to unleash the deadly poison ricin to President Donald Trump, Secretary of Defense James Mattis and several other top administration officials, CNN reports.

The man, a Navy veteran, reportedly confessed to law enforcement that he sent envelopes stuffed with the threatening letters and “ground up castor beans” (which can be turned into ricin if the poison is extracted correctly) “to the president, FBI director, secretary of Defense and the chief of Naval Operations,” according to the Salt Lake Tribune, but pleaded not guilty to “five counts of mailing threats to officers and employees of the US.”

The FBI says the man “knowingly threatened to use a biological agent and toxin, specifically ricin, as a weapon,” even though he was not successful in extracting any actual ricin from the castor beans. He did confess to purchasing the beans and having sent the letters, according to the FBI’s probable cause statement that accompanied the charges.

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