Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has announced the news following an ongoing investigation into Russian interference.
A dozen Russian intelligence officers were charged with indictment on Friday after their involvement in the hacking and leaking of emails of senior Democrats during the 2016 presidential election campaign.
Rosenstein announced the charges during a press conference in Washington after they were filed by special counsel Robert Mueller.
The Associated Press took to Twitter to share the news shortly after 5pm on Friday.
BREAKING: 12 Russian intelligence officers indicted for hacking in 2016 US presidential election.
— The Associated Press (@AP) July 13, 2018
Donald Trump, who is set to meet Vladimir Putin in Russia next week, has reportedly been briefed on the news.
Rosenstein said during the announcement: “The internet allows foreign adversaries to attack America in new and unexpected ways. The blame for election interference belongs to the criminals who committed election interference.”
Hillary Clinton’s campaign was memorably derailed by the leaks, which saw thousands of emails stolen from the accounts of staff at the Democratic National Committee and her campaign chairman John Podesta.
Intelligence agencies in the US have since confirmed the belief that the hacking, which included the technique ‘spearphishing’, was part of an extensive operation ordered by Putin to boost Trump’s bid to become president of the United States.
The indicted Russians have also been accused of hacking into the software used by computer companies that run the US elections.