Wednesday, April 17, 2024

The Justice Department opposes Hunter Biden’s attempts to get rid of charges, resembling the clashes between Trump and legal authorities

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Special counsel David Weiss criticized Hunter Biden’s attempt to dismiss tax charges, calling it legally unfounded and based on a “conspiracy theory.” This happened in court filings on Friday.

Hunter Biden’s lawyers argue that the tax case should be dropped because Weiss was unlawfully appointed as special counsel. They also claim that the plea agreement between Hunter and Weiss, which fell apart last summer, is still valid.

These arguments echo those made by Donald Trump in his special counsel cases. This highlights how cases handled by a special counsel follow similar playbooks, regardless of the defendant, and can become political.

Hunter Biden is facing nine tax-related charges in California, accused of not paying over $1 million in taxes from 2016 to 2019. He also faces gun charges in Delaware for allegedly buying a pistol while using illicit drugs. He has pleaded not guilty.

Similar to Trump, Hunter argues that the special counsel overseeing his cases was unlawfully appointed. However, their arguments differ. While Trump criticized Attorney General Merrick Garland for lacking the power to appoint special counsel Jack Smith, Hunter claimed that Garland should have chosen someone outside the Justice Department, not Weiss, who previously served as the US attorney for Delaware.

Weiss and Smith countered, asserting that Garland has the authority to appoint any special counsel he chooses. Weiss stated in a filing that the Attorney General has had this authority for 150 years.

Weiss also dismissed Hunter’s argument that his office withdrew the plea agreement due to political pressure. He explained that negotiations continued after a federal judge rejected the deal in 2023 but were unsuccessful, leading to the withdrawal.

The trial for the California tax case is scheduled for June, and the judge overseeing the Delaware gun-related case will discuss a trial timeline in the upcoming status conference next week.

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