Russian ‘troll’ indicted by U.S. Justice Department reportedly has ties to nationalist organization
Anna Bogacheva, one of the dozen or so “Internet Research Agency” Russian “trolls” indicted by the United States in 2018, was previously an activist in the “Russkii Obraz” (Russian Image) nationalist movement, according to a new report by Radio Svoboda.
Journalists learned that Bogacheva used to have a VKontakte account registered under the name “Anna Trigga,” which is how she was known in nationalist circles. Bogacheva’s name also appears in the case evidence against Ilya Goryachev, the Russkii Obraz founder who was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2015, as part of the murder investigation against the far-right “Combat Organization of Russian Nationalists.”
According to Radio Svoboda, the Federal Security Service pressured Bogacheva to work for the Internet Research Agency, after the authorities tied her to nationalist groups. Journalists also recovered photographs shared on social media that suggest Bogacheva was acquainted with Maria Butina (the jailed Russian gun rights activist who pled guilty to conspiracy to act as a foreign agent, in connection with unregistered political lobbying in the United States), and Bogacheva and Butina attended at least one of the same events hosted by Butina’s gun-rights organization.
Radio Svoboda managed to learn about ties between nationalists and Evgeny Prigozhin’s current staff, including those who work in St. Petersburg in Prigozhin’s “back office,” dealing with the “African aims” of activities by “Putin’s chef.”