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Mueller probe: US charges 12 Russians intelligence officers with hacking during 2016 election

The new charges come just days ahead of President Donald Trump’s summit with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

world Updated: Jul 14, 2018 12:58 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Rod Rosenstein,Robert Mueller,Mueller investigation update
Deputy US Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announces grand jury indictments of 12 Russian intelligence officers in special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation during a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, July 13, 2018. (Reuters)

A dozen Russian intelligence officers on Friday were charged with hacking into the computers of the Democratic Party and the campaign of Hillary Clinton to influence the 2016 presidential election, according to a new indictment obtained by special counsel Robert Mueller.

The new charges come just days ahead of President Donald Trump’s summit with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland.

“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. Our response must not depend on who was victimized,” deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein said at a news briefing where he announced the new charges that were filed earlier in the day.

These Russian intelligence officers are accused of hacking into the computer networks of the Democrats and members of the Clinton campaign such as her campaign chair John Podesta, stealing documents, and distributing them through WikiLeaks indirectly and directly through DCLeaks posing as Guccifer 2.0, a lone Russian hacker.

The officers belonged to Russian military intelligence agency called GRU.

The special counsel has also obtained guilty pleas from Trump campaign aides such as Michael Flynn and George Papadopoulos and Paul Manafort, the former Trump campaign chair, in currently in jail awaiting trial.

First Published: Jul 14, 2018 09:59 IST