By Tabassum Zakaria and Jeff Mason
WASHINGTON, April 17 (Reuters) - The FBI arrested a Mississippi man on Wednesday in connection with letters sent to President Barack Obama and two other officials that are believed to have contained the deadly poison ricin, the U.S. Justice Department said.
Paul Kevin Curtis was arrested at his home in Corinth, Mississippi, and is "believed to be responsible for the mailings of the three letters sent through the U.S. Postal Inspection Service which contained a granular substance that preliminarily tested positive for ricin," the Justice Department said in a statement.
The letters were addressed to a U.S. senator, the White House and a Mississippi justice official, the statement said.
The ricin poison scare hit Washington after bombings at the Boston Marathon killed three people and injured 176 on Monday, but the FBI said there was no indication the incidents were connected.
The FBI said the envelope sent to Obama was received at a mail-screening facility outside the White House and was immediately quarantined. Preliminary tests showed it contained the deadly poison ricin, the FBI said
Washington was put on edge on Tuesday evening when news emerged that authorities had intercepted a letter sent to Republican Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi that had initially tested positive for ricin.
Following the arrest, Wicker issued a statement thanking the FBI and Capitol Police "for their professionalism and decisive action in keeping our family and staff safe from harm."
Earlier on Wednesday, a flurry of reports of suspicious letters and packages rattled the U.S. capital and caused the temporary evacuation of parts of two Senate buildings. Most of the reports quickly proved to be false alarms, and business was only temporarily disrupted on Capitol Hill.
Read more at Reuters.