If I wanted to frame an Elvis-impersonator as a biological terrorist, how could I get me some ricin?

See subject.

Note to mods, FBI, et al.: hypothetical. If you think you are giving me discrete, direct methods, I still won’t follow them, because they’re not, and you are not a nice person.

ETA: It just surprised me that, for security reasons no doubt, there is zip discussion about this in the lay press, as opposed to quite detailed (relatively) investigations of nuclear smuggling and weaponisation.

Security reasons, and, I wager, journalist laziness. (Not GQ here.)

Grow caster beans in your backyard and refine it from the seeds/beans.

I don’t think Penzey’s carries it.

No, but I’ll bet a greenhouse or Amazon does.

According to wikipedia:

Of course with a little effort, you can come up with a few different extraction methods. The problem is, even if you’re pretty careful, you’ll end up killing yourself before you get a chance to vent your necrotic spleen on anyone else.

The drool tool involved in the latest incident produced something that, from what I heard, wasn’t especially potent. So I’m guessing that’s the only reason that he’s still breathing.

I heard on the news … “Dutchke charged after finding materials… HE ORDERED ON THE INTERNET”.

Go over to Dick Destiny for his take on the threat of ricin.

Let’s just say that Botox is my WMD of choice.

So the lesson to take away from that is not to order them off the internet, pay with cash and don’t put the byproducts in your own garbage. We can learn from his mistakes (hypothetically of course).

Botox, OTOH, is by prescription only. Also, to the best of my knowledge is administered only at cosmetic, pain and neurology offices on an outpatient basis…how do you plan to get enough of that to make a WMD? Or do you plan to actually make plain old botulism on your own?

the castor bean plant is an unusual looking, attractive for its fruit, plant. I was at the largest nursery in the area the other day when a nice looking 30ish man asked the owner if she stocked it. Her answer was in no way suspicious, nor evasive. 'No, but there are a lot of people around here who do have some, and it is easy to grow from the seed. Just ask around, you’ll find someone willing to share."

I had some in Florida, left from a previous owner, and merely warned the kids not to mess with it, it was one of many poisonous plants you might find there.

It grows wild all over the place near my house south of Los Angeles. Stands of it are in vacant lots everywhere.

2 beans are enough to kill a man, the beans clsely resemble pinto beans. I am surprised more people have not used them as poisen.

The real answer also turns out to be the least interesting

I see they found a coffee grinder. That’s supposedly the tool of choice for DIY ricin.

Seems like a good way to accidentally poison yourself.

IIRC, castor beans are safe to eat even raw because the digestive process doesn’t readily extract the ricin, and it’s difficult to absorb through the intestines. Even though it can be deadly in contact or inhalation, no one has ever died except through injection. Amateurs using crude techniques to extract the poison may not get much in the end product and are unlikely to successfully poison even themselves.

So it seems like you need a Walter White type chemist to end up with some lethal stuff. It’s way easier to kill someone with acute lead poisoning of the heart or brain, the materials and delivery systems are readily available.

If you’re using a coffee grinder to make poison, you should wipe it down before making any more coffee.

According to what I’ve read, you can indeed poison yourself by ingesting the seeds, though you may luck out if they pass through without significant digestion.

Well, one way is to buy it.

Sleep well, my little friend. :wink:

I didn’t word that right, raw castor beans are certainly not safe to eat. As you say they might not kill you, but they are by no means safe.

The Slate Explainer on homemade ricin.

Just a note:

I’m re-reading my OP, with a subject header I deliberately made using joky English, and my “note to the FBI”…

That really was a note, for whatever good it really could do in the real world, for if and when this actual thread was read by the national security services, which I have no doubt they do using search algorithms for trigger words. Let alone if for some bizarre set of circumstances Leo Bloom and the identity behind the username got entangled in some criminality.

I don’t believe I’m a black-helicopter person.

Interesting, and scary/sad, but irresistible, ie, it is what it is now.