Putin-tied Russian oligarch bankrolled ‘troll factory’ to spread fake news during 2016 election: report

A Russian oligarch nicknamed “chef” by Russian president Vladimir Putin bankrolled a Russian “troll factory” to spread fake news during the 2016 presidential election, CNN reports.

Yevgeny Prigozhin’s company financed the “Internet Research Agency,” a now-defunct technology firm which included a “Department of Provocations,” which sought to “create news items to achieve our goals,” according to documents reviewed by CNN.

A former IRA employee told CNN the company made its employees watch the TV show “House of Cards” to improve their English skills.

In Dec. 2016, the United States imposed sanctions on Prigozhin for both his work with the IRA and his contributions to the Russian Ministry of Defense’s invasion of Ukraine.

 

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