Robert Mueller’s special counsel has announced the first indictments directly connected to the Trump-Russia probe that has been ongoing since last year. Thirteen Russian nationals and three Russian entities have been charged with Conspiracy to Defraud the United States, Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud and Bank Fraud, and 5 counts of Aggravated Identity Theft.
The full text of the indictment is here.
This is the first legal confirmation of conspiracy involving foreign nationals and those outside of Trump’s already-indicted inner circle. This leads the observer to believe that Mueller has enough evidence to prove collusion or conspiracy simply through the prosecution of individuals and entities proven to interfere in the election, and that indictments and “witness-flipping” done closer to the president will be for the purpose of prosecuting Trump himself.
The indictments show that at least one Russian-controlled Twitter account, which was shut down last year, was committing fraud, and that multiple individuals and entities were purchasing ads on social media, as well as staging rallies that were organized on Facebook purporting to be held by “grassroots” organizations, but in actuality funded and hyped by people back in Russia:
The indictments describe a very detailed organization, with specific employees carrying out specific tasks, all working toward the end goal of defeating Hillary Clinton and electing Donald Trump. Operating under the umbrella name “Internet Research Agency, LLC,” the multiple defendants undertook any number of posting, monitoring, and promoting jobs on social media for the express purpose of, as the indictment says, “impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the government through fraud and deceit for the purpose of interfering with the U.S. political and electoral processes, including the presidential election of 2016.”
And here’s the bombshell: The indictments say that the operation began as early as 2014, or right around the time that the mostly-verified “Steele Dossier” indicated that this all started.
I hope Trump has a Xanax or something today, because it’s gonna be a long day.
Featured image via Opposition Report Gallery