Court Battles

Alleged Russian agent Maria Butina to be sentenced next month

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A federal judge has scheduled alleged Russian agent Maria Butina to be sentenced next month. 

Judge Tanya Chutkan, of the U.S. district court in Washington, D.C., set sentencing on April 26 at 10 a.m. for Butina, who was charged last year with acting as an agent of Moscow to infiltrate Republican groups and influence American politics. 

{mosads}She accepted a deal with prosecutors in December in which she pleaded guilty to conspiring with a Russian government official and an American — later identified as her boyfriend Paul Erickson — to infiltrate GOP political groups like the National Rifle Association and use those connections to influence the U.S. political system.

Erickson, a GOP operative, faces separate charges relating to what prosecutors said was a scheme over two decades to defraud investors and personally enrich himself.  

As part of the deal, Butina agreed to cooperate with federal investigations. 

The charges against Butina were brought by the U.S. attorney’s office in D.C., not special counsel Robert Mueller, who just last week wrapped up his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. 

In that investigation, Mueller found no evidence to prove there was collusion between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign. 

But Butina’s charges are significant because she is the first Russian to be convicted of trying to influence American politics leading up to the 2016 election.

She faces up to five years in prison and will likely be deported soon after her sentence has been served.

Tags Maria Butina National Rifle Association NRA Robert Mueller Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections
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