Monday, 16 July, 2018

Russian agents allegedly used Bitcoin to fund the DNC hack

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced Friday that a federal grand jury has indicted 12 Russian intelligence officers for allegedly hacking the Democratic National Committee the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Hillary Clinton&#x Special Counsel Robert Mueller Indicts 12 Russians for Hacking
Lisa Bryan | 14 July, 2018, 04:59

The indictments were announced Friday by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein as part of the ongoing special counsel probe into potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation.

Rosenstein told reporters the Russian military officers were accused of "conspiring to interfere with the 2016 presidential election", including by hacking Democratic Party emails ahead of the vote.

Before Friday's indictment, Mueller's team had charged 20 individuals and three companies as part of its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible ties to Trump's campaign.

The DOJ indicts 12 Russian intelligence officials, just days before President Trump is set to meet with Vladimir Putin.

Attorney Ken White, a former federal prosecutor, weighs Trump's comments and the apparent Russian reaction and wonders if what he said might amount to aiding and abetting a crime.

The indictment represents special counsel Robert Mueller's first charges against Russian government officials for interfering in American politics, an effort USA intelligence agencies say was aimed at helping the Trump campaign and harming Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.

If the involvement of the GRU officers in the hacking effort is proved, it would shatter the Kremlin denials of the Russian state's involvement in the USA elections.


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.

Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said on Twitter that it was time to end the investigation since "no Americans are involved" in Friday's indictment. "This exchange is entirely public and provides no evidence of collaboration or collusion with Guccifer 2.0 or anyone else in the alleged hacking of the DNC emails, as well as taking place many weeks after the events described in today's indictment". That indictment said the Russians adopted false online personas to push divisive messages, traveled to the United States to collect intelligence and staged political rallies while posing as Americans.

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.

Mueller is investigating whether Trump's campaign colluded with Russian Federation and whether the president has unlawfully sought to obstruct the Russian Federation investigation. "If President Trump is not prepared to hold Putin accountable, the #HelsinkiSummit should not move forward", McCain said in a series of tweets Friday.

Trump said at a news conference Friday near London with British Prime Minister Theresa May that he wasn't going into the meeting with Putin with "high expectations". Indeed, an indictment that directly points to Russian President Vladimir Putin makes it much more hard for critics to dismiss Russia's culpability in election hacking as unproven.

"If it is Russian Federation, which it probably is not, nobody knows who it is, but if it is Russian Federation, it's really bad for a different reason because it shows how little respect they have for our country when they would hack into a major party and get everything", Trump said.

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