U.S. special counsel files 1st charges in Trump-Russia probe: reports

A federal grand jury in Washington on Friday approved the first charges in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, a source briefed on the matter told Reuters.

The filing of the sealed charges was first reported by CNN.

The charges are sealed under orders from a federal judge, and it was not clear what the charges were, CNN said.

U.S. intelligence agencies concluded in January that Russia interfered in the election to try to help U.S. 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.

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 spokesperson 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.

Trump calls Russia probe a ‘witch hunt’2:08

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