Why the Trump-Russia indictments are being kept secret — for now

The first criminal charges in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia probe are secret for now — but that doesn’t necessarily tell us much on its own.

Because the indictments are sealed, we don’t yet know who is being charged or what they are being charged with.

Ken White, a libertarian-leaning lawyer and former assistant US attorney who tweets and blogs as “Popehat,” walked through a brief explainer on Saturday morning, after the news that the first criminal charges in Mueller’s investigation of possible Russian government collusion with the Trump presidential campaign had been approved by a federal grand jury.

The takeaway was: Sealing charges is pretty routine. 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.

So for the time being, we wait. CNN reported that arrests could be made as soon as Monday.