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Read Mueller’s full indictment against 12 Russian officers for election interference

Read Mueller’s full indictment against 12 Russian officers for election interference

In the just-released indictment, prosecutors assert that the 12 named intelligence officers hacked computer networks and email accounts owned and used by the U.S. Democratic Party, including the presidential campaign of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

This is all the U.S. Justice Department said in the announcement of the surprise press conference: "Today at 11:45AM ET: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will hold a press conference for a law enforcement announcement".

The indictment charges twelve Russian nationals for committing federal crimes that were meant to interfere with the 2016 US presidential election.

The group also allegedly conspired to hack into computers of state election boards, secretaries of State and US companies that supplied software and other technology related to election administrations.

Even before Friday's jaw-dropping indictments against 12 of Putin's operatives, the Mueller investigation into the Russian cyberattack on our elections had already produced 79 criminal charges against 20 people and three companies, five guilty pleas and one person sentenced thus far. "There is no allegation in this indictment that any American citizen committed a crime". The court document explicitly states that there is no allegation any vote count was changed or election affected in any direct way.

The indictment says that the hackers, who were trying to hide their true identities, "wrote to a person who was in regular contact with senior members of the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump".

"This has to be the first time that a major presidential candidate has actively encouraged a foreign power to conduct espionage against his political opponent", it said.

After indictment of Russian spies, are Mueller and Rosenstein immune from dismissal? One unit stole information and the other disseminated the stolen information, said Rosenstein.

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

In the most high-profile case related to Mueller's investigation, Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign chairman, was indicted in October on a host of charges, including conspiracy, money laundering and making false statements to the FBI.

"Both were created and controlled by the Russian GRU", he added.

According to the indictment [PDF], the group was behind the DCLeaks and Guccifer 2.0 personas that funneled the materials through an unnamed website (cough, cough, WikiLeaks) to nudge public sentiment in Trump's favor and Russia's interest.

But Friday's indictment was the first by Mueller that directly charges Russia's government with meddling. The Russian officials allegedly then obtained "thousands of stolen emails and documents" that they released through the domain DCLeaks.com while promoting themselves as "American hacktivists".

Trump lawyer Rudolph Giuliani said in a Tweet after the indictments were unveiled: "The indictments Rod Rosenstein announced are good news for all Americans".

Count Ten charges those eleven conspirators with money laundering for transferring cryptocurrencies through a web of transactions in order to purchase computer servers, register domains, and make other payments in furtherance of their hacking activities, while trying to hide their connections to Russian Federation. On Feb. 16, his prosecutors charged 13 Russians and three Russian entities they said were part of a broader effort to sow discord among US voters through social media - which they used to impersonate Americans, coordinate with unwitting USA activists and even plan rallies.