DOD says suspicious letters contained castor seeds, not ricin

DOD says suspicious letters contained castor seeds, not ricin
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The Defense Department’s top spokeswoman on Wednesday said the suspicious substance found in envelopes sent to the Pentagon earlier this week was castor seeds, which can be made into the toxin ricin.

"According to our preliminary analysis, the substance was castor seeds, from which ricin is derived. The FBI is still investigating," Dana White said in a statement to The Hill.

Castor seeds are only dangerous if swallowed, but they can be used to make a poisonous pure form of ricin.


The Pentagon Force Protection Agency detected the suspicious substance in two letters during mail screenings on Monday at the building's remote screening facility.

One envelope was addressed to Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisBiden pick for Pentagon cruises through confirmation hearing Lloyd Austin is the right nominee for defense secretary and the right leader for this moment Austin pledges to empower Pentagon civilians MORE and the other was meant for Chief of Naval Operations John Richardson.

Officials suspect a former Navy sailor is behind the multiple parcels, Fox News reported Wednesday.

In addition, suspicious envelopes addressed to President TrumpDonald TrumpLil Wayne gets 11th hour Trump pardon Trump grants clemency to more than 100 people, including Bannon Trump expected to pardon Bannon: reports MORE were intercepted on Monday by the U.S. Secret Service.