By Miriam Raftery
February 16, 2018 (Washington D.C.) – It’s official: Russia actively worked to sabotage American democracy and put Donald Trump in the White House.
Today, Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller released copies of indictments filed against 13 Russians and three Russian entities on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and other charges ranging from bank fraud to identity theft in their quest to violate laws that prohibit foreigners from spending money to influence U.S. elections. Read the full indictment here.
The indictment language is damning, documenting how the Russian organization Internet Research Agency plotted “information warfare against the U.S.” paid for in Russian rubles at a budget of $1.25 million a month.
Russians posing as Americans used social media to post positive information on Trump and negative information, much of it false, disparaging other candidates opposing Trump including Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Hillary Clinton. They also organized pro-Trump and anti-Clinton marches and rallies in the U.S.
They were aided by at least 100 U.S. citizens and and communicated with members of the Trump campaign, the indictment makes clear, and funneled illegal contributions into electing Trump. At least some of those contacts were "unwitting."