- Hunter Biden, President-elect Joe Biden’s 43-year-old son, announced Wednesday that federal prosecutors in Delaware are investigating his taxes.
- “I take this matter very seriously but I am confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately,” he said in a statement.
- CNN reported that the investigation into Hunter Biden’s taxes dates back to at least 2018 and was temporarily put on hold during the election because of its politically sensitive nature.
- CNN’s Evan Perez told Jake Tapper that the probe, which has since resumed, is “looking at everything from taxes to potential violations of money laundering laws.”
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Hunter Biden, President-elect Joe Biden’s 43-year-old son, announced on Wednesday that his taxes are under investigation by federal prosecutors in Delaware.
“I learned yesterday for the first time that the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware advised my legal counsel, also yesterday, that they are investigating my tax affairs,” the younger Biden said in a statement on Wednesday. “I take this matter very seriously but I am confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately, including with the benefit of professional tax advisors.”
The president-elect’s transition team released a statement at the same time expressing support for Hunter.
“President-elect Biden is deeply proud of his son, who has fought through difficult challenges, including the vicious personal attacks of recent months, only to emerge stronger,” the transition team said.
CNN reported on Wednesday that the investigation into Hunter Biden’s taxes began in 2018 and was temporarily halted because of Justice Department rules barring prosecutors from taking actions that could influence the outcome of the election.
CNN’s Evan Perez told Jake Tapper that the US attorney’s office in Delaware told prosecutors after the election that they could continue with the probe and could take overt investigative steps.
Perez added that the investigation is related primarily to Hunter Biden’s business dealings in China and is “looking at everything from taxes to potential violations of money laundering laws.” The network reported that prosecutors are scrutinizing, in particular, a 2017 meeting between Hunter Biden and a Chinese businessman after which the younger Biden went back to his hotel room and received a 2.8 karat diamond from the businessman.
Hunter Biden described the meeting in an interview last year with The New Yorker and told the magazine he was uncomfortable receiving the diamond.
“I knew it wasn’t a good idea to take it. I just felt like it was weird,” he said.
Some of the younger Biden’s meetings also raised counterintelligence concerns at the FBI, which CNN reported is a common issue when dealing with matters related to China.
—Andrew Solender (@AndrewSolender) December 9, 2020
President Donald Trump and his allies aggressively attacked Hunter Biden in the run-up to the election over his business dealings in Ukraine and China. The president accused the younger Biden and, by extension, his father, of corruption related to their business practices.
Earlier this year, Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani was involved in coordinating the release of a widely discredited story by the New York Post about a laptop purportedly belonging to Hunter Biden and said to contain incriminating material about his business dealings and personal life. A computer repair shop owner in Delaware told reporters that the FBI seized the laptop late last year.
It’s unclear whether the laptop is relevant to the federal investigation into Hunter Biden’s taxes, and after the New York Post’s story was published, it was reported that the FBI was investigating whether the contents of the machine were part of a foreign influence operation.