12 Russian military intelligence officers were indicted by a federal grand jury on Friday.
The charges are hacking the computer networks of 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party, the Justice Department said.
Reuters reported that the indictment, secured by Special Counsel Robert Mueller in his ongoing investigation of Russian involvement in the 2016 election won by President Donald Trump, was issued three days before Trump, who is currently on a visit to Britain, is scheduled to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin for a summit in Helsinki.
“The indictment charges 12 Russian military officers by name with conspiring to interfere with the 2016 presidential election,” Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein told a news conference.
Rosenstein also added that there is no proof that U.S. citizens were involved in the alleged crimes described in the indictment.
A Justice Department news release said that officers of Russia’s military intelligence agency, the GRU, “in their official capacities engaged in a sustained effort to hack into the computer networks of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Democratic National Committee and the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and released that information on the internet under the names DCLeaks and Gufficer 2.0.”
Since Mueller took over the investigation he has indicted several former Trump campaign aides, including campaign chairman Paul Manafort and former White House national security advisor Michael Flynn.
Mueller in February also indicted 13 Russians and three Russian companies in an elaborate conspiracy to interfere in the election. The indictment said the Russians adopted false online personas to push divisive messages, traveled to the United States to collect intelligence and staged political rallies while posing as Americans.