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Iran Press TV

FBI arrests man in ricin letter case in Washington

Iran Press TV

Thu May 23, 2013 3:1PM GMT

The FBI has arrested a man charged with mailing a letter containing the deadly toxin ricin to a judge in Washington, authorities say.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested Matthew Ryan Buquet on Wednesday, who was charged with mailing threatening communications to US District Judge Fred Van Sickle in the US city of Spokane, police said.

Federal authorities searched Buquet's home on Saturday for evidence linked to the crime including items related to the production of the deadly poison ricin - a highly lethal toxin made from castor beans.

Buquet entered a plea of not guilty. If convicted of the charge, he would face a 10- year prison term and a USD 250,000 fine.

On May 14, a court employee intercepted the letter during a screening process, with subsequent analysis confirming the substance in the letter contained ricin.

Investigators failed to reveal whether the Spokane envelope is related to a batch of ricin-tainted letters recently sent to a number of US officials including President Barack Obama, Republican Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi, and Mississippi Judge Sadie Holland.

On April 27, James Everett Dutschke was arrested in the US state of Mississippi on suspicion of mailing the three earlier letters.

GMA/KA



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