Russians charged with USA 2016 election hack

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media captionFBI's Peter Strzok Anti Trump bias claims'deeply destructive

Using the name "Guccifer 2.0", the Russians told Trump associate Roger Stone ― identified in the indictment as "a person who was in regular contact with senior members of the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump" ― that it would be their "great pleasure" to help. That was count 10 of 11 handed down by the Special Counsel.

USA intelligence agencies have concluded that Russian Federation, in an effort ordered by Putin, used propaganda and hacking to meddle in the election in an effort to harm Clinton and eventually help Trump.

Ingraham later "clarified" that tweet to note that the indictment doesn't say Russian Federation tried to hack Team Hillary for the first time, period, that day in July.

The Kremlin, meanwhile, denied anew that it tried to sway the election.

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 US elections.

Could be just a coincidence but Andrew Prokop's right to note that the indictment specifies the Russians started probing those particular accounts that day "for the first time" and that they did so "after hours", which reads like an attempt to emphasize that it happened later in the day than the Trump clip above.

"They also hacked into the computer networks of a congressional campaign committee and a national political committee". It says the information acquired by "spearfishing" and other hacking techniques was released via online fronts DCLeaks and Guccifer 2.0.

"President Trump should cancel his meeting with Vladimir Putin until Russian Federation takes demonstrable and transparent steps to prove that they won't interfere in future elections", he said.

However, "there's no allegation in this indictment that the Americans knew they were corresponding with Russian intelligence officers", he said.

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They also plotted to hack into the computers of state boards of elections, secretaries of state, and voter software, according to the indictment.

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.

"Free and fair elections are hard fought and contentious and there will always be adversaries who work to exacerbate domestic differences and try to confuse, divide and conquer us", he said.

Before Friday, 20 people and three companies had been charged in the investigation. They are accused of taking part in a hidden but powerful social media campaign to influence public opinions in America before the November 2016 elections.

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

The GRU, which answers to the Russian military's General Staff, is part of the state machine and its involvement would indicate that the orders to interfere in the USA election came from the very top. Trump complained about the Russian Federation investigation hours before the indictment, saying the "stupidity" was making it "very hard to do something with Russian Federation".

Today, WikiLeaks tweeted that the indictments are an "interesting timing choice" ahead of President Trump's scheduled meeting with Vladimir Putin on Monday.

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.

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