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U.S. authorities sentenced a female foreign national to over 21 years in prison on Thursday after a failed attempt to poison former President Donald Trump at the White House in 2020 and other Texas public officials with threatening letters containing homemade ricin toxins.
Pascale Cecile Veronique Ferrier, a dual citizen of Canada and France, was sentenced to 262 months in prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release after pleading guilty earlier this year to prohibitions concerning biological weapons in two separate criminal cases in Washington, D.C., and the Southern District of Texas, according to the Department of Justice.
“Ferrier admitted that she made ricin at her residence in Quebec, Canada, in September 2020. Ricin is a deadly poison made from castor beans,” court documents stated. “Ferrier placed the ricin toxin in envelopes containing letters she wrote to then-President Trump at the White House and to eight Texas State law enforcement officials.”
Ferrier, 55, appeared at the hearing on Thursday wearing an orange prison jumpsuit and addressed the court, where she reportedly described herself as a “peaceful person.”
“I consider myself to be an activist, not a terrorist,” she said, according to CNN. “Activists are constructive; terrorists are destructive.”
“The only regret I have is that it didn’t work and that I couldn’t stop Trump,” Ferrier added.
Ferrier had been previously detained in Texas for approximately ten weeks in 2019 for unlawfully carrying a weapon and using a fake driver’s license, according to jail records. DOJ officials said she believed the law enforcement officials were connected to her period of detention.
In September 2020, she posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, for someone to “please shoot [T]rump in the face.”
“The letters in the envelopes contained threatening language, and the letter addressed to then-President Trump instructed him to ‘[g]ive up and remove [his] application for this election,’” the DOJ said in a news release. “Ferrier mailed each of the threatening ricin letters from Canada to the United States.”
In her letter to Trump, CNN reported that Ferrier wrote, “You ruin USA and lead them to disaster. I have U.S. cousins, then I don’t want the next 4 years with you as President. Give up and remove your application for this election!”
Ferrier also called Trump “The Ugly Tyrant Clown” in the letter, as noted by BBC.
The letter, which Ferrier referred to as “a special gift,” had traces of her fingerprints identified by the FBI.
“If it doesn’t work, I’ll find better recipe for another poison, or I might use my gun when I’ll be able to come,” the note read.
After mailing the letters to the Trump White House, authorities said Ferrier drove a car from Canada to the Peace Bridge Border Crossing in Buffalo, New York, on September 20, 2020, where border patrol officials found her in possession of a loaded firearm, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and other weapons, and arrested her.
Ricin has been previously used to target federal law enforcement and officials, including an attempt made by “The Walking Dead” actress Shannon Richardson in 2014, where she mailed the deadly toxin to President Barack Obama and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.