The first charges have been filed in special counsel Mueller's Russian Federation investigation

Robert Mueller files first charges in probe over Russian meddling in US election

The charges, which are still sealed under orders from a federal judge, mark a dramatic escalation for Mueller, as the drama surrounding the Justice Department investigation gradually moves from a political battleground into the courtroom.

CNN reported Friday night that a federal grand jury has reportedly approved the first charges in Mueller's probe. It prevents the target of an indictment from knowing they're about to be charged and arrested, which limits the risk of defendants destroying evidence or any shenanigans when they are eventually brought in.

Speculation has run rampant on news networks an social media as to what the charges are and whom they are against, with reports that someone could be taken into custody early as Monday.

Mueller's team has issued subpoenas for documents and testimony to people involved in the Trump Tower meeting between Russians and campaign officials.

By June, Trump himself was reportedly under investigation for obstruction of justice.

Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mr Mueller, declined to comment.

Sources familiar with Mr Mueller's investigation said he has examined links between aides of Mr Trump and foreign governments, as well as possible money laundering, tax evasion and other financial crimes.

The Kremlin has also denied the claims.

The allegation led to speculation that president might have obstructed justice by attempting to influence the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe.

Mueller's broad mandate gives him not only oversight of the Russian Federation probe, but also "any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation".

The Russia investigation has cast a shadow over Trump's nine-month-old presidency and widened the partisan rift between Republicans and Democrats.

It is still not known who will receive the indictment or what the charges are.

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