The U.S. Department of justice ( DoJ ) on July 13 released a statement in which it accuses twelve Russian citizens in committing a Federal crime, funded by cryptocurrency with the aim to “intervene” in the presidential elections in 2016 in the United States.
According to the DoJ, Russian officials from the two subdivisions of the Main intelligence Directorate (GRU) of the government used Bitcoin for funding of hacker attacks on a network of computers of the US Democratic Party. The suspects are also accused of disrupting the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and the attack on technology companies in the country.
The chief judge of the district of Columbia, as well as cyber-FBI teams from Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, San Francisco and the Department of national security of the United States argued that Russian officials used the cryptocurrency to buy up the accounts and servers that allowed them to illegally access private networks through phishing attacks.
Russian officials allegedly took “thousands of stolen emails and documents” to publish them on DCLeaks.com posing as American activists.
The U.S. Department of justice argues that the alleged criminal activity “has changed the number of votes or the outcome of elections of 2016”.
The indictment consists of eleven criminal charges, including accusations of money laundering 95 000 dollars via a cryptocurrency with the purpose of financing illegal activities. DoJ notes that mining cryptocurrency, which has paid for domain DCLeaks.com also financed hacker attack.
This is not the first DoJ investigation associated with cryptocurrencies — at the end of may, the Department began an investigation of price manipulation Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Earlier this week, U.S. President Donald trump issued a decree on the establishment of a new task force to combat crime, which will mainly deal with fraud with cryptocurrencies.