German federal prosecutors charged Sief Allah H, a 29-year-old Tunisian citizen, on Thursday with producing a biological weapon after highly toxic ricin was found in his apartment in Cologne.
H has been in custody since Tuesday, when his apartment was raided. Authorities first became suspicious after the man ordered 1,000 castor seeds, the main ingredient for producing ricin, and a coffee-grinder online last month.
Ricin is 6,000 times stronger than cyanide, and was popularized in pop culture by the television show Breaking Bad. The toxic substance is restricted by a 1997 international convention on chemical weapons, and exposure causes organ failure and death within 36-48 hours. There is no known cure.
According to German media, Allah first came to Germany in 2016, reportedly sympathized with the Islamic State, and followed IS instructions on how to produce a ricin bomb.