The disclosure that a grand jury has convened in California to probe Hunter Biden’s business dealings, and that this grand jury has subpoenaed President Biden’s brother James, indicates that Special Counsel David Weiss has broadened his criminal probe of the first son to include his years of overseas consulting, during which he and his uncle leveraged “the Biden brand” — to use one associate’s parlance — to bring in millions of dollars from clients in Ukraine, Communist China, and other countries.
CNN first reported on Thursday evening that the president’s brother, among others, has been subpoenaed by the grand jury Mr. Weiss had convened as part of his wide-ranging investigation into the first son. Hunter Biden and his uncle worked together for years on behalf of foreign clients and saw windfalls as part of the lucrative consulting businesses.
Mr. Biden fils may also still be under investigation for failing to pay taxes in 2017 and 2018, when he was in the throes of active addiction. He had attempted to plead guilty to misdemeanor tax offenses earlier this year as part of a doomed deal to resolve firearms charges against him. When the overambitious plea deal collapsed under judicial scrutiny, Mr. Weiss charged Mr. Biden with three gun felonies at Delaware. What’s become of the tax charges is unknown.
Two IRS whistleblowers have alleged that Mr. Weiss or other Department of Justice officials intentionally allowed the statute of limitations to lapse for the first son’s evasion of taxes in 2014 and 2015.
The allegations that the DOJ dragged its feet on the investigation — which Attorney General Garland and Mr. Weiss deny — came from two IRS agents, Gary Shapley and Joseph Ziegler. In testimony before the Oversight Committee, they said that they had never seen such a cut-and-dry tax evasion case as Mr. Biden’s and were perplexed why the first son was not charged.
“In November of 2022, the statute of limitations was set to expire for the 2014 and 2015 charges in D.C., which included the 2014 felonies for the attempt to evade or defeat tax and fraud or false statement regarding Burisma income earned by Hunter Biden,” Mr. Shapley said to the Oversight Committee.
The focus on James Biden could signify a honing in on these tax issues or violations of lobbying statutes, given that the first son and his uncle worked together for many years. A report from ProPublica in 2020 disclosed the benefits the president’s brother received as a result of his last name. Over the course of decades, James Biden received millions of dollars in loans from the president’s network of donors, attorneys, and private sector allies despite not having the necessary assets to put up as collateral.
The Sun has reached out to the respective legal teams for Hunter and James Biden for comment. Mr. Weiss’s office declined to comment on the ongoing investigation.
At the hearing where Mr. Biden was set to enter a guilty plea for “willful” tax evasion and enter a pretrial diversion program for the gun purchase, the presiding judge refused to accept the deal because prosecutors and the defense were not in agreement about whether the first son was immune from future prosecution.
The judge, Maryellen Noreika, explicitly referenced potential violations of the Foreign Agents Registration Act, the law that governs when American officials must register as advocates for foreign governments, businesses, or individuals.
“There are references to foreign companies, for example, in the facts section,” Judge Noreika said during the July hearing, referring to the disclosure of some of the lobbying Mr. Biden did on behalf of foreign business interests. “Could the government bring a charge under the Foreign Agents Registration Act?” she asked. Mr. Weiss’s attorneys said yes, while Mr. Biden’s counsel said they thought he was immune from such charges.
Judge Noreika is also presiding over Mr. Weiss’s prosecution of the first son for his illegal gun purchase.