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December 7, 2023

Hunter Biden indicted on nine new federal tax charges

As reported in this AP piece, "Hunter Biden was indicted on nine tax charges in California on Thursday as a special counsel investigation into the business dealings of the president’s son intensifies against the backdrop of the looming 2024 election." Here's more:

The new charges — three felonies and six misdemeanors — come in addition to federal firearms charges in Delaware alleging Hunter Biden broke a law against drug users having guns in 2018.

Hunter Biden “spent millions of dollars on an extravagant lifestyle rather than paying his tax bills,” special counsel David Weiss said in a statement. The charges are focused on at least $1.4 million in taxes he owed during between 2016 and 2019, a period where he has acknowledged struggling with addiction.

If convicted, Hunter Biden could face up to 17 years in prison. The special counsel probe remains open, Weiss said. Hunter Biden had been previously expected to plead guilty to misdemeanor tax charges as part of a plea deal with prosecutors. Defense attorneys have signaled they plan to fight any new charges, though they did not immediately return messages seeking comment Thursday....

The criminal investigation led by Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss has been open since 2018, and was expected to wind down with the plea deal that Hunter Biden had planned to strike with prosecutors over the summer. He would have pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor tax evasion charges and would have entered a separate agreement on the gun charge. He would have served two years of probation rather than get jail time.

The agreement also contained immunity provisions, and defense attorneys have argued that they remain in force since that part of the agreement was signed by a prosecutor before the deal was scrapped. Prosecutors disagree, pointing out the documents weren’t signed by a judge and are invalid.

After the deal fell apart, prosecutors filed three federal gun charges alleging that Hunter Biden had lied about his drug use to buy a gun that he kept for 11 days in 2018. Federal law bans gun possession by “habitual drug users,” though the measure is seldom seen as a stand-alone charge and has been called into question by a federal appeals court.

Prior related posts:

December 7, 2023 at 09:19 PM | Permalink


In a normal case, the prosecution would now be looking for a deal including testimony against any potential higher-ranking defendants.

Posted by: William Jockusch | Dec 7, 2023 9:45:19 PM

I am not sure that this is a normal case. I know that the disputes about tax liability normally do not result in criminal charges, especially when the taxpayer fully pays the disputed taxes along with civil penalties and interest. Since I was never a federal prosecutor and the reasoning of which cases merit criminal charges is somewhat vague, I am not sure what is the something more in this case that supports criminal charges.

And, at least from what has been revealed publicly, I am not seeing any higher-ranking defendants that Hunter Biden could implicate. This seems to be primarily about his personal taxes and, at least so far, there is no indication that Hunter Biden is part of a criminal conspiracy on other isssues.

Posted by: tmm | Dec 8, 2023 10:48:01 AM

I am not an attorney, but it seems there is one potential significant higher-ranking defendant that Hunter Biden could implicate…his father…President Joe Biden…but why would he do that when Dad can wave his magic Pardon Wand and make all these charges go away?

Posted by: MDV | Dec 10, 2023 10:34:36 PM

While I have no love for Hunter (or his dad), he is being treated unfairly. Less prominent folks in his situation who fully paid what they owed years ago would not have been indicted with felony tax evasion counts.

Posted by: anon | Dec 11, 2023 1:27:07 AM


Interesting case. Thought you might like it, Doug.

Posted by: federalist | Dec 11, 2023 10:06:36 AM

anon--I just have to chuckle. First of all, the DOJ let statute expire without Hunter paying taxes, so if anyone is being treated unfairly, it is the American taxpayer. Second, Hunter is getting over on FARA. Third, there is plenty of evidence that Hunter willfully underreported tax--that's going to get you indicted all day. Look at the amounts involved.


Posted by: federalist | Dec 11, 2023 12:30:26 PM

Interesting, federalist. Do you have a problem with enforcement of (valid?) gun laws when the guns are used to protect personal SD rights? Would your feelings change if, say, someone had an illegal pit bull that was used in self defense or if, say, someone possessed illegal fentynal for personal use and then she uses that fentynal in self defense to make a deadly cocktail for a threatening sexual masher?

Posted by: Doug B | Dec 11, 2023 2:04:48 PM

I don't know. Haven't really thought about it. I don't think that the government can make crazy laws regarding guns then prosecute people for illegal possession.

Posted by: federalist | Dec 11, 2023 2:35:27 PM


Andrew McCarthy's take. Love the shills in here.

Posted by: federalist | Dec 11, 2023 3:15:08 PM

Funny how the shills go quiet.

Posted by: federalist | Dec 12, 2023 9:53:35 AM


Posted by: federalist | Dec 12, 2023 3:53:43 PM


What a joke. Come on shills, defend ,. . . .

Posted by: federalist | Dec 13, 2023 10:25:37 AM

Doug, you may be interested in this take: https://reason.com/2023/12/13/the-multiplying-charges-against-hunter-biden-exemplify-a-profound-threat-to-trial-by-jury/?comments=true#comments

Posted by: federalist | Dec 13, 2023 10:31:36 AM


Let's see if Merrick immediately gets charges filed.

Posted by: federalist | Dec 13, 2023 11:39:54 AM

I would pay lots -- indeed, probably everything I own -- for my kid NOT to grow up to be like Hunter Biden.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Dec 16, 2023 9:33:33 AM

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