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First charges filed in Russia probe led by US Special Counsel: source
Washington: A federal grand jury has approved the first charges in the investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election, a source briefed on the matter told Reuters.
The charges are still sealed under orders from a federal judge, but plans have been prepared for anyone charged to be taken into custody as soon as Monday.Special Counsel Robert Mueller Photo: AP
It was not clear what the charges were or who the target was, the source said.
The filing of charges by the grand jury in Washington was first reported earlier on Friday by CNN, which said the target could be arrested as soon as Monday.US President Donald Trump Photo: AP
US intelligence agencies concluded in January that Russia interfered in the election to try to help President Donald Trump defeat Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton through a campaign of hacking and releasing embarrassing emails, and disseminating propaganda via social media to discredit her campaign.Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating whether Trump campaign officials colluded with those Russian efforts.
He is also examining other possible crimes, including obstruction of justice, money-laundering and tax evasion.
Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller, declined to comment to Reuters about the CNN report on Friday.
Trump, a Republican who was elected president last November, has denied allegations that his campaign colluded with Russians and condemned investigations into the matter as a witch hunt.
The Kremlin has denied the allegations.
Mueller was appointed by the Justice Department in May to lead the investigation after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, who was leading a federal investigation into possible collusion with Russia.
In July, FBI agents raided the Virginia home of Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, whose financial and real estate dealings and prior work for a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine are being investigated by Mueller’s team.
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