21:17 GMT +311 December 2019
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    US Defense Department personnel, wearing protective suits, screen mail as it arrives at a US government facility near the Pentagon in Washington, DC on October 2, 2018

    US Navy Veteran Charged Over Ricin Threat Against Trump, FBI Head, Pentagon

    © AFP 2019 / Thomas WATKINS
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    The former Navy serviceman confessed to sending letters containing the beans used to produce the deadly substance, a court statement has revealed.

    A former US Navy serviceman had been charged with sending packages laden with ricin targeting US President Donald Trump, Defense Secretary James Mattis, FBI chief Christopher Ray and US Admiral John Richardson. He subsequently confessed to sending four envelopes containing the substance from which ricin is derived.

    The complaint filed in US District Court in Salt Lake City accused William Clyde Allen III with threatening to use the biological toxin ricin as a weapon. According to a court statement, he sent the dangerous substance in letters addressed to Trump and the others nearly two weeks ago. Allen was arrested on Wednesday at his home in Logan, Utah.

    ​As the court documents revealed, Allen later admitted to sending the letters, but that they contained harmless castor beans, which can be refined to produce the deadly toxin. His motives remain unknown. 

    READ MORE: Former US Navy Sailor Reportedly Mailed Packages With Ricin

    Ricin is a poisonous agent that can take different forms, including those of a purified powder, which can be deadly.

    ricin, US Navy, James Mattis, John Richardson, Donald Trump, Utah
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