Published: Sat, July 14, 2018
Worldwide | By Victor Meyer

Russian Intelligence Officials Indicted On Hacking Charges

Russian Intelligence Officials Indicted On Hacking Charges

So minutes before Rosenstein could announce the news, Williams told the world the still-embargoed information: special counsel Robert S. Mueller III had filed new indictments charging 12 Russian intelligence officials with conspiring to hack the 2016 Democratic National Convention computers.

The 11-count indictment names the Russians defendants, alleging they began cyber-attacks in March 2016 on the email accounts of staff for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.

Second, Friday's move is typical in that Mueller's indictments tend to always seem a bit surprising in their breadth, indicating that the investigation is a little broader, a little farther along, and a little more wide-ranging than many observers think. That includes four former Trump campaign and White House aides and 13 Russians accused of participating in a hidden but powerful social media campaign to sway American public opinion in the 2016 election.

"President Trump should cancel his meeting with Vladimir Putin until Russian Federation takes demonstrable and transparent steps to prove that they won't interfere in future elections", he said.

But Representative Jerrold Nadler, top Democrat on the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee said in a Tweet, "Latest indictments from @TheJusticeDept assert Russian agents were behind the hacks and leaking of DNC emails, in order to influence the 2016 election".

"The Russian state has never interfered and has no intention of interfering in the USA elections", Mr Putin's foreign affairs adviser, Yuri Ushakov, said.

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One attempt at interference came hours after Trump, in a July 27, 2016, speech, suggested Russians look for emails that Clinton said she had deleted from her tenure as secretary of state.

The Department of Justice said the defendants used the cryptocurrency Bitcoin as part of a "conspiracy to launder money in which the defendants laundered the equivalent of more than $95,000 by transferring the money that they used to purchase servers and to fund other costs related to their hacking activities".

Mueller's indictment appears to mention the transaction, mentioning that in August, 2016, "the conspirators, posing as Guccifer 2.0, transferred approximately 2.5 gigabytes of stolen data from the DCCC to a then-registered state lobbyist and online source of political news".

Trump said he did not know who was orchestrating the election hacking but suggested it was "probably China", adding that if it was hypothetically Russian Federation intelligence, it would show their lack of reverence for the United States.

Hours before the Justice Department announcement, Trump complained anew that the special counsel's investigation is complicating his efforts to forge a better working relationship with Russian Federation. His team is investigating efforts by Russian Federation to influence the 2016 USA presidential election. "We would have a chance to have ... a very good relationship with President Putin".

During a press conference early Friday with UK Prime Minister Theresa May, President Trump said he will be bringing up the issue of Russian election meddling at that time. They plan to hold a one-on-one meeting in Helsinki.

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