FBI outlines case against ricin suspect - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

FBI outlines case against ricin suspect

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U.S. District Courthouse in Oxford, Miss. (Tom Dees / FOX13 News) U.S. District Courthouse in Oxford, Miss. (Tom Dees / FOX13 News)
OXFORD, Miss. (FOX13) -

Federal Judge S. Alan Alexander said there is probable cause that James Everett Dutschke did knowingly produce ricin and conspire to use it as a weapon and ordered him held without bond.
Dutschke appeared in U.S. District Court for a preliminary hearing Thursday morning in Oxford and waived his right to a detention hearing.

Judge Alexander also bound his case over to a federal grand jury and is now awaiting an indictment.

While Dutschke's attorney argued whether or not the ricin was deadly, FBI agents rattled off a laundry list of evidence against the Tupelo man.

FBI agents testified that DNA links Dutschke to a ricin-laced mask that he allegedly dumped after leaving his Taekwondo studio in Tupelo. The mask tested positive three times for ricin.

READ: 8-page federal affidavit against James Dutschke: http://content.foxtvmedia.com/whbq/dutschkefbiaffidavit.PDF

MORE: Child may have tipped off FBI in ricin case: http://www.myfoxmemphis.com/story/22137214/child-may-have-tipped-off-fbi-in-ricin-case

MORE: Items removed from Dutschke's studio test positive for ricin: http://www.myfoxmemphis.com/story/22121801/items-removed-from-studio-test-positive-for-ricin

MORE: Dutschke arrested in ricin letter case:  http://www.myfoxmemphis.com/story/22095575/dutschke-arrested-in-ricin-letter-case

Agents say they had watched Dutschke leave the studio on April 22 and dump several items in a trash can 100 yards away. Federal agents retrieved a box for a coffee bean grinder, a mask, and a box of rubber gloves.
According to testimony when Dutschke was shown the evidence he became agitated with agents, and told them that they were losing focus and needed to concentrate on Paul Kevin Curtis of Corinth, who the FBI initially arrested in the poisoned letters case.

Curtis was later released from federal custody and federal charges were dropped.

Special Agent Steven Thomason testified in federal court that Dutschke had ordered as many as 200 castor beans from a man in Tennessee. Thomason testified that the day after FBI agents questioned Dutschke, the 41-year-old shut down his eBay account through which he had allegedly ordered the castor beans.

According to the FBI samples were taken from the drains in the back of Dutschke's Taekwondo studio which tested positive for ricin, and that a filter from a vacuum in Dutschke's studio also tested positive for the poison.

Testimony also revealed the ricin that was used in the letters that were sent in early April to President Barack Obama, Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi, and Lee County, Miss., Justice Court Judge Sadie Holland, had been processed with more than just a coffee bean grinder. The castor beans according to the FBI were shelled, ground, and the oils extracted.

Federal agents say 50 documents found in Dutschke's home bear similar trash marks to the three ricin-laced letters. Agents say some of the documents used to promote Dutschke's martial arts studio bear similar markings as well.

As of Thursday agents are actively searching another Dutschke property for another printer and more evidence.

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