Hunter Biden, the president’s son, following the collapse of an earlier plea agreement, has been charged on three counts related to his application for a gun.
The Hunter Biden Drama, Restarted
Earlier this month, a Justice Department memo indicated that Hunter Biden, the son of the president, would be indicted on weapons charges. Now, that has happened.
The younger Biden was indicted Thursday on a trio of charges, alleging that he lied on an ATF form, lied to a gun dealer in Delaware, and purchased a gun while on the influence of drugs, all in connection with his purchase of a firearm, all in 2018, CNN reported Thursday.
The charges were brought by Special Counsel David Weiss, and do not concern anything involving the younger Biden’s taxes, or his overseas business dealings. While Weiss’ appointment as special counsel had reportedly had to do with whether he had the power to file charges outside of Delaware, the charges Thursday were entered in Delaware.
The gun charges are the same allegation on which the presidential son had reached an agreement in order to avoid prosecution earlier this year, a deal that fell apart on the day it was scheduled to be entered in court.
If convicted on all three counts, Hunter Biden could face up to 25 years in prison and fines of up to $750,000. However, he is a first-time offender and unlikely to face anything close to that type of prison time.
There has been talk that the gun charges under which Hunter Biden was facing indictment might not pass constitutional muster, due to a recent federal court ruling. But according to CNN, that is only the case with one of the three charges that the presidential son is currently facing.
There are, of course, political dynamics to the arrival of the charges. The president’s son will likely be facing federal criminal charges while his father is running for president, although of course, his likely opponent is currently facing criminal charges of his own, in four separate cases.
Democrats have therefore found themselves in an uncomfortable position.
“The evidence suggests Hunter Biden is guilty of unethical and/or illegal behavior. The evidence suggests Joe Biden is guilty of absolutely nothing more than being a father,” Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN), who was briefly floated in the summer as a potential Democratic challenger to President Biden, said in a statement on social media following the charges.
“DOJ indicting Hunter Biden is unprecedented. Never before have federal prosecutors, part of the executive branch, filed criminal charges against an immediate relative of the sitting president. Shows a remarkable commitment to the principle that, in the US, no one is above the law” political commentator Nicholas Grossman said on X, formerly Twitter, after the indictment.
“His lawyers have already told Justice Department officials that, if their client is charged with the gun crime, they will challenge the law under the Second Amendment, according to a person familiar with the private discussions granted anonymity because they are not authorized to speak publicly,” the story said. “That could turn a case that is already fraught with political consequences into a high-profile showdown over the right to bear arms.”
Earlier in the week, a controversy had emerged over why the House Oversight Committee, which has been investigating Hunter Biden and other relatives of the president for most of the year, had not yet subpoenaed the younger Biden to appear before the committee. Chairman James Comer, in an interview, had stated that the younger Biden is welcome to appear before the committee at any time, but that he would be likely to fight any subpoena.
Hunter Biden’s lawyer, Abbe Lowell, wrote to the House Oversight Committee this week and stated that Hunter was willing to meet with them if he had any information that “may inform some legitimate legislative purpose.”
Author Expertise and Experience
Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Stephen has authored thousands of articles over the years that focus on politics, technology, and the economy for over a decade. Follow him on X (formerly Twitter) at @StephenSilver, and subscribe to his Substack newsletter.
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