As Republicans continue to try and debunk the Special Counsel probe into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, Robert Mueller has been working behind closed doors on his investigation.
It has been months since any charges have been filed in the probe but just moments ago, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has indicted 12 Russian intelligence officers in the hacking of the DNC.
“The internet allows foreign adversaries to attack Americans in new and unexpected ways,” Rosenstein said. “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.”
It was the first round of new international indictments since February, when 13 Russians and three Russian companies were charged with campaign interference and coordinating with low-level Trump campaign activists.
The indictments stem from a “spear phishing” attack against email servers owned and operated by the Democratic National Committee (DNC). Spear phishing is an email-spoofing method in which a hacker targets a specific organization or individual, seeking unauthorized access to sensitive information.
Rosenstein said during his press conference on Friday that Russians stole and released Democratic documents after planting malicious computer codes in the network of the DNC as well as the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
The Deputy Attorney also notes that Russia’s GRU military intelligence service was behind several online entities that spread the documents under the names Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks.
The 2016 attack affected thousands of employees with emails from John Podesta, Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, being published by outlets including WikiLeaks.
The new indictments arrive just a few weeks before the first trial will begin against one of Mueller’s most high-profile indictments, Paul Manafort.
As mounting evidence continues to form, it appears Former FBI director James Comey was correct during his congressional testimony in 2017. Comey said at the time there was “no doubt” the Russian Government meddled in the 2016 U.S. election.
Additionally, President Trump is set to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki next week. Much of their time spent together will reportedly involve closed door meetings without the presence of any aides.