Russian Election Troll w/ $35 Million Operating Budget Charged by DOJ

Here is a look at the official complaint filed by the United States Justice Department against Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova, 44, a Russian national from St. Petersburg. Though the complaint was filed against her on September 28th 2018, she was officially charged with the crime today – October 23, 2018. According to a press release from the United State Department of Justice, Khusyaynova is charged with operating a Russian propaganda team/service through the Discord online chat platform. More specifically, Khusyaynova is being charged with conspiracy to “defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the government through fraud and deceit for the purpose of interfering with the U.S. political and electoral processes, including the presidential election of 2016.

Reportedly, Khusyaynova is accused of operating a Russian troll/political disinformation platform between the months of January 2016 and June 2018, consisting of an unknown number of accomplices with an operating budget somewhere around $35 million dollars. In addition to spreading mis-information online to sow discontent through American society, Khusyaynova is also alleged to have used her platform to sell malicious hacking tools and resources. According to the DOJ, no Americans are known to have participated or collude with her team.

Official Complaint from US Department of Justice: