Moscow now accused of USA election meddling, in indictment

14 July, 2018, 04:57 | Author: Bert Pena
  • Alex Wong  Getty Images North America

The indictments come from the US Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who's been charged with investigating any suspected links between Russians and officials with President Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.

Announced by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the charges were drawn up by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director who is looking into Russian interference in the November 2016 vote.

The indictment accuses members of Russia's military intelligence agency known as the GRU of carrying out "large-scale cyber operations" to steal Democratic Party documents and emails.

In February, Mueller charged 13 Russians and three Russian companies in an elaborate conspiracy to interfere in the election. Among those indictments includes three Trump associates who have pleaded guilty and 14 other Russian citizens.

There is also no allegation in Friday's charges that "any American was a knowing participant in the alleged unlawful activity", the indictment says.

To help mask their Russian origins, the military officers used networks of computers located across the world, including in the U.S., and paid for it using Bitcoin.

Rosenstein said there is no allegation that United States citizens were involved in the alleged crimes described in the indictment.

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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".

The US president recalled that 60 intelligence officers were expelled from the Russian embassy in Washington in response to a nerve agent attack on a former Russian spy in Britain. "The Russian state has never interfered and has no intention of interfering in the US elections", Putin's foreign affairs adviser, Yuri Ushakov, said Friday.

Hours before the Justice Department announcement, Mr Trump complained anew that the special counsel's investigation is complicating his efforts to forge a better working relationship with Russian Federation. And they say that on the same day Trump said in a speech, "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing", Russian hackers tried for the first time to break into email accounts used by Clinton's personal office. "If President Trump is not prepared to hold Putin accountable, the #HelsinkiSummit should not move forward", McCain said in a series of tweets Friday.

"When we confront foreign interference in American elections, it is important for us to avoid thinking politically as Republicans or Democrats and instead to think patriotically as Americans", he said.

Mr Trump said at a news conference on Friday near London with British Prime Minister Theresa May that he was not going into the meeting with Mr Putin with "high expectations".

President Donald Trump (R) and Russia's President Vladimir Putin talk as they make their way to take the "family photo" during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders' summit in the central Vietnamese city of Danang on November 11, 2017. "I did it. You got me.' There won't be a Perry Mason here", he said.

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