Federal prosecutors looking at Hunter Biden’s taxes

Federal prosecutors are investigating Hunter Biden (photo, left) for potential violations of “tax and money laundering laws in [his] business dealings in foreign countries, principally China,” CNN reported on Wednesday, December 9, 2020.

The investigation has been ongoing since 2018, but was paused for the election, and now investigators are interviewing witnesses and issuing subpoenas, CNN said.

The story of Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings is a tangled trail leading through dodgy witnesses, a ballyhooed laptop, Trump’s impeachment, and Hunter Biden’s own troubled personal history. The CNN story goes into those details. For an even more detailed account, read the Associated Press story here, which reported ” the tax investigation does not have anything to do with the laptop.”

The U.K.-based tabloid Daily Mail also said (here) “the Justice Department is scrutinizing some of Hunter Biden’s Chinese business deals and not the contents of his laptop” trumpeted by Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, in the weeks before the election.

Hunter’s lawyer was informed of the investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office, which is a standard practice, on Tuesday, December 8, CNN said. Hunter Biden then issued a statement that, “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.

Meanwhile, Joe Biden’s transition team said in a press release the president-elect is “deeply proud” of his son, who has “fought through difficult challenges, including the vicious personal attacks of recent months, only to emerge stronger.”

Hunter Biden became a rightwing bogeyman, and smearing Joe Biden with his son’s business dealings, which even impartial journalists have called “questionable,” was thought by Trump to be an election-winning strategy. That led to Trump’s own corrupt actions to paint his father as “corrupt,” but there’s no evidence he was involved in anything his son did.

What happens next should be governed by rule-of-law principles: Hunter Biden should be treated like anyone else would be. If he did nothing illegal, this should go nowhere, because there’s no place in our legal system for political prosecutions. If meritorious charges are brought against him, then his father’s position shouldn’t protect him from prosecution or consequences.

For now, we’ll have to wait and see how this develops and plays out.

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