The first criminal charges resulting from an investigation into collusion between the campaign of President Donald Trump and the Russian government have been filed, according to CNN, which broke the news late Friday, 27 October 2017.
A federal grand jury in Washington, D.C. approved the charges, which are sealed by a judge. However plans were prepared for "anyone charged" to be taken into custody as early as Monday. Both the Wall Street Journal and Reuters independently confirmed CNN's report.
In March 2017, then-FBI director James Comey broke from the Bureau's standard practice of not commenting on or even confirming the existence of investigations by announcing that the FBI was investigating the Russian government's interference in the 2016 presidential election. Less than two months later, he was abruptly fired by President Donald Trump. Shortly after, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who has oversight over the investigation since Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself over questions of whether he had also met with Russian envoys, brought in Mueller as special counsel.
According to CNN:
The special counsel's investigation has focused on potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, as well as obstruction of justice by the President, who might have tried to impede the investigation. CNN reported that investigators are scrutinizing Trump and his associates' financial ties to Russia.
In late July 2017, the FBI conducted an early-morning raid on the home of Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign chair, seeking "documents related to tax, banking and other matters." One year prior, Donald Trump Jr. posted on Twitter he had met with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya at Trump Tower in New York and shared an e-mail chain in which he was told the Russian government wanted to help the Trump campaign by providing detrimental information of his father's rival, Hillary Clinton.