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Another Russian indicted — key link between the National Rifle Association and Kremlin jailed in Washington, DC

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Federal prosecutors unsealed an indictment on Monday against a Russian national who is a key link to the National Rifle Association.

Mariia Butina, 29, was arrested on Sunday in Washington, DC, but her indictment was sealed, being revealed after President Donald Trump’s Helsinki summit with Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin.

The National Security Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the National Security Division of the U.S. Department of Justice are prosecuting the case.

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Alexander Torshin, the head of Russia’s central bank, and Butima met with Donald Trump, Jr. at the NRA’s 2016 convention.

In April, Russian expert Alina Polyakova told CNN it appeared she was running a gun-based influence campaign in the United States.

“We could give them the benefit of the doubt and say this is just a natural interest and affinity; this guy Torshin and this woman Butina are just gun aficionados,” Polyakova noted. “To me this seems like part and parcel of an influence operation.”

In a press release announcing the unsealing of the indictments, the Department of Justice seemed to reveal Torshin’s involvement by saying Butima “worked at the direction of a high-level official in the Russian government who was previously a member of the legislature of the Russian Federation and later became a top official at the Russian Central Bank. This Russian official was sanctioned by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control in April 2018.”

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 purpose of advancing the interests of the Russian Federation.”

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Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia Jessie K. Liu, and Nancy McNamara, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office announced the charges.

If convicted, Butina could receive five years in prison.

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House Intelligence report on Trump is scathing — but does anyone really care?

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On Wednesday of last week, the House Intelligence Committee issued its impeachment report on President Trump. The facts are clear. Trump has engaged in obstruction of justice, abuse of power and other high crimes and misdemeanors in his effort to extort or bribe the government of Ukraine into aiding him in the 2020 presidential election. Donald Trump also usurped the power of Congress to allocate public money in the form of military aid to Ukraine. Trump has also repeatedly invited foreign countries to interfere in America’s elections on his behalf.
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‘Giuliani did all the wrong things’ on 9/11: Investigative reporter Wayne Barrett

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Janine Jackson interviewed the Village Voice’s Wayne Barrett about Rudy Giuliani and 9/11 for the August 17, 2007, episode of CounterSpin; that conversation was rebroadcast for the November 29, 2019, show. This is a lightly edited transcript.

[audio mp3="https://www.rawstory.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/CounterSpin191129Barrett.mp3"][/audio]

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Saturday Night Live mocks Trump as an unpopular high school dork after disastrous NATO Summit

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NBC's "Saturday Night Live" on Saturday ridiculed President Donald Trump after he was laughed at by world leaders during a NATO Summit in London.

The skit featured Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emanuel Macron as the cool kids at the NATO cafeteria, while U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson attempts to join their cliche.

Trump asked to sit at their table, but they suggested he sit with Latvia.

They said the seat was for German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who was then invited to join the cool kids table.

The skit included Johnson taping an "impeach me" sign to Trump's back.

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