Mariia Butina: Woman arrested in DC for working on behalf of Russian Federation

Lester Mason
July 16, 2018

Ms Butina, who lives in Washington, was arrested on Sunday and was ordered held in jail pending a hearing set for Wednesday, the Department of Justice (DOJ) said in a statement.

The DOJ also seemed to refer to the NRA by noting part of Butina's role "as an agent of Russia inside the United States" who was "infiltrating organizations having influence in American politics, for the objective of advancing the interests of the Russian Federation".

She allegedly worked at the direction of a high-level Kremlin official.

The DOJ indictment accuses Butina, who is also known as Mariia Butina, of attempting to "infiltrate organizations active in US politics in an effort to advance the interests of the Russian Federation". As TPM has documented and the new criminal filings lay out, they used that group to establish close ties with Republican officials in the USA, inviting them to summits in Moscow.

Mariia Butina is accused of acting as an unregistered agent on Russia's behalf between 2015 and 2017, in collaboration with "others known and unknown, including an official of the Russian Federation", according to the complaint.

"The charges in criminal complaints are merely allegations and every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt", the statement continues.

USA media have previously reported her ties to the National Rifle Association (NRA), the most powerful gun lobby in the US.

If convicted, Butina could receive five years in prison.

It comes just hours after US President Donald Trump backed his Russian counterpart's denial that there was any involvement or meddling in the American elections.

"As I said today and many times before, "I have GREAT confidence in MY intelligence people".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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