Russian intel officers indicted for hacking Democrats in 2016 USA election
Jul 14, 2018, 02:42
"At or around the same time, they targeted seventy-six email addresses at the domain for the Clinton campaign", the indictment reads.
The Kremlin denied anew it tried to sway the election.
The DOJ also accused the 12 suspects of conspiring to hack into the computers of state boards of elections, secretaries of state, and USA companies that produced software used by states for administering elections.
They used spear-phishing techniques to steal user names, passwords and emails and paid for the operation with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the indictment alleges.
The groups created the online personas DC Leaks and Guccifer 2.0 used to release the stolen emails, claiming that DC Leaks was a group of American hackers and Guccifer 2.0 was a lone hacker, but Rosenstein said both actually worked for Russian intelligence.
Putin has denied any election meddling, and Trump has denied any collusion with Russian Federation.
But the Justice Dept., said there is "no allegation" any American was a knowing participant in the Russian's alleged unlawful activities. The text of the indictment does not state that vote totals were known to be altered as a result of these intrusions. "This is consistent with what we have been saying all along", the statement said.
He said the hackers did interact with some Americans in the course of their efforts, but noted those people had not been charged with a crime.
A few hours before the indictments were announced, Trump described the Mueller investigation as a "rigged witch hunt" that is hurting the U.S. 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.
Friday's charges are not the first for Russian nationals.
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. "There is no debate that the Russians meddled in the election". Rosenstein said he briefed Trump earlier this week on the charges.
"Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing", Trump said, looking directly into TV cameras, at a press conference in Florida that day in which he also cast doubt that Russian Federation was behind the hacking.
"The president is fully aware" of the indictments, Rosenstein said.
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.
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. Trump said Thursday he would ask Putin about the Kremlin's interference in the 2016 US election, but pointed out Putin will likely deny it.
It was the most detailed USA accusation yet that Russian Federation meddled in the election with the eventual aim of trying to boost Republican Trump's campaign.
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The GRU, or main intelligence directorate, "has a special status and answers directly to the chief of the general staff, one of the three people who control Russia's portable nuclear control", Reuters reported in 2009, adding that its chief is chosen by the country's president.
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