It was only a matter of time before Hunter Biden’s business in Ukraine was revived. It was thanks to information from the newspaper The New York Times, which revealed that the son of the president of the United States, the only one alive of the three from his first marriage, settled at the end of 2020 the tax debts of, it is estimated, more than one million dollars for which he still has a pending case, as part of a larger investigation into his business dealings in Asia and Europe, but especially Ukraine, while his father was vice president. Having cleared his file with the treasury does not necessarily imply that he manages to avoid prosecution for these irregularities, but it does tip the scales of the sympathy of the judges on the acquittal side, according to the New York newspaper.
Taxes are, however, the least of Hunter Biden’s problems, a 52-year-old lawyer trained at the exclusive Yale University, whose life, according to what he recounted in his memoirs, published in 2021, fell down the ravines of alcoholism and drug addiction following the 2015 death of his older brother, Beau, from a brain tumor. Hunter, who lost his mother and sister in a car accident in which he was also traveling in 1972, starred in one of the campaign scandals that brought his father to the White House, due to his employment relationship with an energy company Ukraine, named Burisma, who came to pay him $50,000 a month. He served on his board of directors for five years, accepting the position in 2014, when his father was Barack Obama’s number two.
It was with the Obama Administration that a tax investigation began, which in 2018 became a criminal investigation to determine if he committed crimes such as tax fraud or money laundering or if he exercised lobby in Washington for a foreign firm in an illicit manner. At the moment, he still has not been charged with any crime. His behavior in those years is at the origin of the first impeachment (impeachment process) of Donald Trump in 2019. That political trial, from which he emerged unscathed, tried to determine whether the tycoon and several high-ranking officials in his government pressured Ukrainian leaders (especially the president, then unknown to the public American Volodymyr Zelensky) to investigate the activities of Hunter Biden. Those dirty laundry suited Trump to discredit one of the most serious Democratic opponents of the 2020 campaign, which ended up kicking him out of the White House.
In October, a few weeks before the election date, the soap opera was visited by an unexpected character: a Mac Book Pro laptop that Hunter Biden, who has now crossed over to the art world, never picked up from a computer repair shop in Wilmington, the city in the small state of Delaware that his family calls “home” and to which the president escapes whenever he can. On the computer, whose hard drive the owner of the establishment made a copy of and gave to Trump’s entourage when he realized it was who it was from, there were 103,000 text messages, 154,000 emails, in which he referred to his father as ” the big guy” (the important guy), whose invocation opened doors for him, and more than two thousand photographs, including an indeterminate amount of sexual content.
The existence of the computer revealed it in full The New York Post. The tabloid obtained the material from Rudy Gulianni, a former New York mayor and Trump lawyer (and one of those aides who allegedly pressured Ukraine). Then, New York Times took up the news to air that some of the editors involved in the exclusive had decided to withdraw their signature for ethical reasons, but did not go further in the investigations.
On Thursday they published a piece that started with the Hunter Biden tax regularization, said that the Delaware federal grand jury investigation continues (without bearing fruit) and contained this paragraph (number 24): “People familiar with the investigation said that the prosecutors had examined emails between Biden, [uno de sus socios, Devon] Archer and a few other recipients about Burisma and other foreign business activities. Those emails were obtained by New York Times from a cache of files that appears to come from a laptop abandoned by Biden in a Delaware garage.” Biden senior attributed these reports then “to a disinformation campaign” orchestrated by the Russians.
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The topic, resurrected, landed last Thursday at Jen Psaki’s daily appearance. Biden’s spokeswoman, who usually behaves like a temperate tamer of the circus of egos and envy of the American correspondents in the White House, responded with intemperate boxes to the question about Hunter Biden’s computer. “He is NOT a member of the US Government,” she said. On Friday they asked him again, and he got into a fight with a journalist from the New York Post. “He is not a member of the US government,” he repeated. But, Psaki fears a lot, he is from the president’s family.