OAN’s Brooke Mallory
4:35 PM – Wednesday, September 6, 2023
Towards the end of the month, Hunter Biden will be the subject of a federal grand jury indictment for his gun-related offenses, the Justice Department announced in a court filing on Wednesday.
The petition was made in response to a court order issued orally on August 31st that requested an update on the case from the Justice Department and Biden’s attorneys, as well as any actions they felt the Delaware court should take.
“The Speedy Trial Act requires that the government obtain the return of an indictment by a grand jury by Friday, September 29, 2023, at the earliest. The government intends to seek the return of an indictment in this case before that date,” Special Counsel David Weiss said.
Soon after Weiss’ report was submitted, attorneys for Hunter did the same, stating that the 53-year-old has been abiding by the terms of a prior diversion arrangement made with federal prosecutors to avoid a felony firearms charge.
“Mr. Biden has been following and will continue to follow the conditions of that Agreement, which the U.S. Attorney’s Office agreed and signed and informed the Court on July 20, 2023 that the Probation Office had agreed to and had recommended be put into effect,” his lawyers stated.
As part of the diversion arrangement, Biden would need to refrain from alcohol and drug use, submit to drug testing, forgo committing other felonies for two years, and consent to never again owning a handgun.
The first son’s plea deal with federal prosecutors in June, which would have allowed him to avoid prosecution on a felony charge of owning a firearm while addicted to crack cocaine, fell through in a Delaware courtroom in July.
As a result, the first son was not eligible for broad immunity protection.
Under the terms of the ill-fated agreement, Hunter would have been sentenced to two years of probation for two tax offenses and to a diversion program for the weapons allegation.
Weiss departed from the predetermined course of action during a contentious, three-hour hearing in a federal courtroom in Wilmington, Delaware, where U.S. District Judge Maryellen Noreika was expected to certify the agreement.
Noreika was told that the agreement, which was unprecedented at the time, did not stop investigators from continuing their ongoing inquiry into Hunter’s alleged crimes, including his alleged violations of the Foreign Agents Registration Act.
Chris Clark, an attorney for Hunter, referred to the plea deal as “null and void” after hearing Weiss suggest that the prosecution would file more charges.
However, according to Wednesday’s status report, Hunter’s legal team reportedly feels that the deal is still in effect, at least in regard to the gun accusation.
Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Weiss as special counsel in the case on August 11th. He did so after citing “the extraordinary circumstances relating to this matter” in support of his choice to give the Delaware U.S. attorney broad authority to file charges, issue subpoenas, and obtain search warrants related to the case.
IRS investigators in charge of the case testified before Congress earlier this month, saying that U.S. attorneys chosen by President Biden prevented Weiss from filing charges against his son in Southern California and Washington, D.C., and that Weiss had been denied special counsel status earlier in the investigation despite requesting it.
Both statements have been refuted by Garland and Weiss.
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