Woman suspected of mailing ricin to President Trump at the White House is accused of sending poison-tainted envelopes to a sheriff and law enforcement in Texas
- Sheriff Eddie Guerra said he and three of his detention staff received envelopes laced with ricin in Hidalgo County, Texas
- No one was poisoned and an investigation has been launched
- Authorities believe the same person who sent the envelopes to Texas addressed one to President Trump at the White House
- The unidentified woman was taken into custody on Sunday at the US border
- Police have not confirmed her identity but say she was armed
- On Monday, Royal Canadian Mountain Police descended on an apartment complex in Montreal
- Police in Montreal say she sent six letters in total; one to Trump and five to an address in Texas
- They won’t say if she is America or Canadian, or if she lived at the apartment that is being searched
- The police force described it as a ‘big’ operation that they are conducting to help US authorities
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The first letter was intercepted earlier this week at the final offsite processing facility where mail is screened before it reaches the White House. A preliminary investigation confirmed the presence of ricin from Canada.
An unidentified woman was arrested on Sunday by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection at the Peace Bridge crossing near Buffalo, New York.
The woman is expected to face federal charges, three law enforcement officials told The Associated Press, and is set to appear in federal court in Buffalo on Tuesday.
Authorities believe she sent a total of six letters; one to Trump and the others to people in Texas.
An envelope containing ricin was mailed and addressed to President Trump (pictured) earlier this week from an address in Canada
The letter addressed to the White House appeared to have originated in Canada, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have said.
And envelopes containing ricin were also mailed to law enforcement agencies in the Rio Grande Valley in South Texas, according to another law enforcement official.
The official did not say which agencies were sent the envelopes but said they are believed to have been mailed by the same person who sent one to the White House.
The officials were not authorized to discuss the ongoing investigation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
One of the envelopes was sent to the police in Mission, Texas, said Investigator Art Flores, a spokesman for the border community’s police department. He said no one was hurt.
Although Flores did not specify which agency, Sheriff Eddie Guerra of the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office revealed he had been a recipient.
Sheriff Eddie Guerra (pictured) of the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office announced that he had received a envelope of ricin
Guerra revealed that he and three of his detention employees received the toxic mail
It was not immediately clear when the envelopes reached Hidalgo County, which contains Mission and the city of McAllen.
In a tweet, Guerra said they he and three staffers had received the dangerous envelopes in the mail.
‘I can confirm that envelopes, containing the deadly toxin ricin, was mailed to me and three of my detention staff.’ he wrote.
‘At this time due to a active federal investigation I cannot make any further comments but a media release will be sent out tomorrow. No injuries were sustained.’
Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrive at the home of the woman suspected of mailing Trump a letter that contained ricin
The woman has not been named but she is also suspected of sending similar letters to law enforcement officials in Texas
The woman remains in custody in the US. She is thought to have been arrested by the FBI
Canadian police on Monday swooped on an apartment complex in Montreal in connection with a ricin-laced letter that was sent to Trump.
While there, police roped off a modern beige and brown apartment building and evacuated its inhabitants.
On Saturday, the RCMP confirmed that the letter had apparently been sent from Canada and said that the FBI had requested assistance.
A Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman at the scene of the raid on Monday afternoon
It’s unclear how the woman became connected to the ricin plot. She was arrested on Sunday trying to enter the US
The RCMP said the search is being led by chemical and explosives teams. They do not think there is a threat to the public
Teams entering a van on Monday during the search. Police in Canada say the woman sent six letters in total
Ricin is found naturally in castor beans but it takes a deliberate act to convert it into a biological weapon.
Ricin can cause death within 36 to 72 hours from exposure to an amount as small as a pinhead. No known antidote exists.
The FBI declined to comment on Monday.