US to sanction Russian oligarchs under law retaliating for alleged election-meddling

The Trump administration plans to sanction a number of Russian oligarchs under a new law targeting Moscow in retaliation for alleged election meddling, Fox News has learned.

A senior administration official told Fox News the sanctions would be announced by the end of this week. It was not immediately clear how many Russian business leaders would be targeted by the measures, but The Washington Post reported that at least six people would be affected.

The Post also reported that the sanctions are expected to be levied against individuals on a list of Russian political and business leaders released by the Treasury Department in January.

Reuters, which first reported on the coming sanctions, said the affected oligarchs have ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin as well as the Kremlin.

Last month, the White House sanctioned 19 individuals and five entities, including Russian intelligence services, in response to Moscow's activities during the 2016 election campaign as well as numerous cyber attacks.

In February, special counsel Robert Mueller indicted 13 Russians and three Russian companies in what Mueller's office described as a plot to wage "information warfare" against the U.S.

Russia-West relations have sunk to their lowest level since the Cold War following Moscow's 2014 annexation of Crimea and support for separatists in eastern Ukraine and differences over the war in Syria as well as the allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Tensions further escalated this month after the poisoning of an ex-Russian spy in Britain, leading to mass diplomats' expulsions by the West and Russia. Britain has blamed Russia for the poisoning of former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter, accusations which Russia has ferociously denied.

Fox News' Serafin Gomez and The Associated Press contributed to this report.