Special counsel David Weiss intends to seek an indictment against President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, relating to gun charges by the end of the month.
The news is the latest indication that the Democratic primary elections could be much closer contests than the White House wants Americans to believe.
Biden is being challenged by environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and author Marianne Williamson, both of whom are channeling traditional Democratic Party leaders as the incumbent seeks to discuss issues while his inadequacies pile up.
Documents submitted by the Justice Department on Wednesday said, “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.”
Weiss, the Republican US Attorney for Delaware, was appointed as special counsel after a plea bargain collapsed in court and several GOP officials claimed without proof that the prosecutor’s office was influenced by the White House.
Hunter Biden was prepared to plead guilty to two counts of willful failure to pay taxes and enter a diversion program for a felony firearms possession charge involving a failure to acknowledge drug use when purchasing a gun.
But the agreement collapsed as it was reviewed by a judge, with prosecutors and attorneys for Biden left unclear of the extent the president’s son would be immune to prosecution on other matters.
Hunter Biden had previously reached a deal would have allowed him to avoid prosecution if he met certain conditions over a 24 month period.
However, after his plea deal to resolve two tax charges fell apart in court, the future of the gun deal has been in limbo.
Hunter Biden’s gun-related legal troubles relate to a firearm he purchased in October 2018.
While buying a revolver at Delaware gun shop, he lied on a federal form when he swore that he was not using, and was not addicted to, any illegal drugs – even though he was struggling with crack cocaine addiction at the time of the purchase.
It’s a federal crime to lie on that ATF form or to possess a firearm as a drug user. (Hunter Biden possessed the gun for about 11 days in 2018.) Prosecutors have previously said the statute of limitations for some of these offenses is set to expire in October.
Weiss has been spearheading the Hunter Biden investigation since late 2018.
Over the years, his team investigated potential felony tax evasion, illegal foreign lobbying, money laundering and other matters, largely tied to Hunter Biden’s overseas business deals.
The probe appeared to be winding down in June, when Weiss announced a two-pronged agreement where Hunter Biden would plead guilty to two federal tax misdemeanors, and enter into a “diversion agreement” where the gun charge would be dropped in two years if he passed drug tests and stayed out of legal trouble.
But at a stunning court hearing in July, the deal collapsed under scrutiny from the federal judge overseeing the case. The two sides tried to renegotiate an agreement, but talks reached an impasse and Attorney General Merrick Garland elevated Weiss to special counsel status in August – a major escalation in the probe.
In addition to the gun case, Weiss is still weighing whether to charge Hunter Biden with tax crimes. He said in a court filing last month that “a trial is now in order” on the tax offenses ad that he “may bring tax charges” possibly in California or Washington, DC.