One of the shadowy industry’s pioneers is a soft-spoken law school dropout. Worried that his online accounts could be shut down, the 24-year-old asked to be known only as Mikhail.

He takes on a different persona at night, prowling the internet as “Jesica,” an American who frequently posts pro-Trump memes on Facebook.

The website and Facebook page that “Jesica” runs caters to conservative readers in the U.S.

The stories are political — and often wrong on the facts. But that doesn’t concern Mikhail.