By 2016, the size of many of these groups, according to the indictment, had amassed hundreds of thousands of online followers. One of the suspects, Yevgeniy V. Prigozhin, is also reportedly wealthy and has ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The Russians also paid Americans to promote political campaigns and stage political rallies, the indictment said.
The White House took a different view, issuing a statement saying that Trump had been briefed on the matter and was "glad to see the Special Counsel's investigation further indicates there was NO COLLUSION between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation".
Robby Mook, Clinton's former campaign manager, tweeted: "The intelligence community has repeatedly told us Russian Federation meddled". Why were several top Russian spies, previously banned from U.S. entry, allowed to enter?
Thirteen Russian Nationals Charged for US Election Meddling
Trump tweeted that Russian Federation started its anti-US campaign in 2014, long before he announced his candidacy for president. Five of the defendants are charged with aggravated identity theft and three with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud.
The 13 Russians charged are: Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin; Mikhail Ivanovich Bystrov; Mikhail Leonidovich Burchik; Aleksandra Yuryevna Krylova; Anna Vladislavovna Bogacheva; Sergey Pavlovich Polozov; Maria Anatolyrvna Bovda; Robert Sergetevich Bovda; Dzheykhun Nasimi Ogly; Vadim Vladimirovich Podkopaev; Gleb Igorevich Vasilchenko; Irina Viktorovna Kaverzina and Vladimir Venkov. The Justice Department has for years supported indicting foreign defendants in absentia as a way of publicly shaming them and effectively barring them from foreign travel.
"Frankly, the United States is under attack", Coats said at an annual hearing on worldwide threats.
According to the indictment released by special counsel Robert Mueller's office, a Russian organization operating under the name Internet Research Agency waged "information warfare" in the US throughout the election season.
There is no crime called "collusion" in US law, but former federal prosecutor Randall Eliason, now a professor at George Washington University Law School, said the same conduct is often covered by the offense of conspiracy.
Facebook said in a statement it had previously disclosed the Internet Research Agency's activity on its platform. They "see what they want to see". Together, both the Russian nationals and the company created numerous online accounts that posed as activists and political groups, with the goal of attracting real USA followers. They went ahead and purchased political advertisements on social media and used stolen or fictitious American identities and false identification documents.
When Donald Trump finally acknowledged publicly that Russians had hacked Democratic emails and interfered in the 2016 presidential election, the then-president elect immediately regretted it.
22 kill, 28 wounded in multiple bomb blast in Borno
Three female suicide bombers have attacked a community in Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State, North-east Nigeria . The conflict with Boko Haram has killed more than 20,000 people and forced over two million to flee their homes.
President Donald Trump seized on Rosenstein's comments to declare that the indictments provided evidence that his campaign did not collude with the Kremlin.
The IRA's focus on the United States reportedly began in 2014 when the agency launched a "translator project" to focus on the US population.
Pressed on the election interference that is alleged to have occurred while he was Russia's envoy to Washington, Kislyak said, "I'm not sure I can trust American law enforcement to be the most precise and truthful source of information about what Russians know". Group members traveled to at least 10 states gathering information on USA political advocacy groups while posing as grassroots activists.
Posing as politically and socially active Americans, the accused advocated for and against particular political candidates. And according to one internal review, a specialist was criticized for having a low number of posts criticizing Clinton. According to the indictment, Internet Research Agency specialists were instructed to "use any opportunity to criticize Hillary and the rest (except Sanders and Trump - we support them),'" The Post reports. "We must unite as Americans".
Trump had seized on the fact that the Russian "information warfare" effort, as a top Justice Department official called it, began in 2014, before Trump announced his White House run.
One of the defendants, Irina Kaverzina, wrote in an email to a family member obtained by investigators, "I created all these pictures and posts, and the Americans believed that it was written by their people".
Canada defeated in a shootout
Kubalik redeemed himself a few minutes later, capitalising on a broken clear attempt by the Canadians. Canadian defender Chris Lee was skating near the Czech bench during a power play for his team.