Department of Justice –Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C Demers announced on Monday charges filed against a Russian National.
The Russian national is charged with, “conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian Federation within the United States without prior notification to the Attorney General.”
Mariia Butina aka Maria Butina, twenty-nine, a Russian citizen residing in Washington D.C. was arrested on July 15, 2018.
According to the affidavit, Butina, from as early as 2015 and continuing at least until February 2017, worked at the direction of a high-level official, who was once a “legislature of the Russian Federation,” and later became a top “official at the Russian Central Bank.” This official was later sanctioned in April 2018.
The Criminal Complaint filed in the District of Columbia details the Russian officials efforts for Butina to act as an agent within the U.S. for the benefit of the Russian Federation, by Butina developing “relationships with U.S. persons and infiltrating organizations, having influence in American politics.”
While the Criminal Complaint does not list organizations, according to the linked Affidavit does stated that Butina along with her Russian official, who is a Russian Citizen, “took various overt acts in furtherance of the conspiracy and to effect illegal purpose therefore.” It also details her contact with an United States citizen and an American political operative.
Person 1 worked with Butina, “to jointly arrange introductions to U.S. persons having influence in American politics, including an organization promoting gun rights for the purpose of advancing the agenda of the Russian Federation.”
Food for Thought:
In May of 2018 The News Blender reported that Alexander Torshin, a former Senator for the Russian government, and at one time the deputy governor for the Bank of Russia, was/is also a lifetime member of the “National Rifle Association,” most recently he has been placed on the sanctioned list of Russian oligarchs. Maria Butina founded a group in Russia called “Right to Bear Arms,” and is said to be an associate of Alexander Torshin who according to reporting is under investigation by the FBI and a person of interest to special counsel Robert Mueller.