Hunter Biden put out a statement Wednesday saying he is under federal investigation over his taxes.
‘I learned yesterday for the first time that the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware advised my legal counsel, also yesterday, that they are investigating my tax affairs,’ Biden said.
Hunter Biden (left) put out a statement Wednesday through his father President-elect Joe Biden’s (right) transition office revealing that he was under federal investigation over his taxes
The Biden-Harris transition team put out a statement Wednesday from Hunter Biden and President-elect Joe Biden, in which Hunter Biden revealed he was under federal investigation for his taxes
‘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,’ Hunter Biden said.
Hunter Biden’s statement was accompanied by one from his father, the president-elect.
‘President-elect Biden is deeply proud of his son, who has fought through difficult challenges, including the vicious personal attacks of recent months, only to emerge stronger,’ Joe Biden said.
A spokesperson for the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s office told DailyMail.com, ‘We cannot comment on an ongoing investigation’ when asked about the origin of the investigation and what, exactly, investigators were looking at.
Hunter Biden’s business dealings – particularly those in Ukraine and China – have been politically problematic for his father for more than a year. Hunter Biden was doing business in foreign countries while his father was serving as President Barack Obama’s vice president. He’s been accused of profiting off his father’s political career.
President Donald Trump’s impeachment involved a scheme to pressure the Ukrainian president into announcing an investigation into Hunter and Joe Biden – a likely 2020 rival – while holding up $400 in military aid.
There was chatter that Hunter Biden was being investigated when The New York Post published emails in October from a laptop that purportedly belonged to the younger Biden, with the contents given to the newspaper by Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani.
CNN reported Wednesday that an investigation into Hunter Biden’s business dealings in China had been put on pause in the run-up to the election because Justice Department guidelines prohibit actions that could have an impact on the outcome.
But now federal authorities are actively looking into the younger Biden’s dealings including whether Hunter Biden and his associates violated tax and money laundering laws when doing business in foreign countries, but mainly China, CNN said.
The network also reported that some of the transactions involved people that the Federal Bureau of Investigation believed presented counterintelligence concerns, again an issue with the Chinese.
The probe began as early as 2018, meaning it predated the Trump-friendly Attorney General Bill Barr taking over the top post at the Justice Department, CNN also said.
Barr has said publicly that the the president-elect isn’t under investigation and two sources told CNN that the probe doesn’t allege any wrongdoing on Joe Biden’s part.
One item of interest to investigators could be a 2.8-carat diamond gifted to Hunter Biden in 2017 from the founder and former chairman of CEFC China Energy, Ye Jianming, after a Miami business meeting, CNN said.
The diamond was part of the original inquiry, but it’s unclear if it’s still a focus, the network reported.
Hunter Biden described receiving the diamond during his July 2019 interview with The New Yorker, saying that after meeting Ye and offering to use his contacts to help the Chinese businessman identify liquified natural gas projects in the U.S., the diamond was sent to his hotel room.
Hunter Biden said he didn’t interpret as a bribe. ‘What would they be bribing me for?’ he asked. ‘My dad wasn’t in office.’
But he decided not to keep the gem anyway.
‘I knew it wasn’t a good idea to take it. I just felt like it was weird,’ he said.
Hunter Biden said he gave the diamond to one of his associates and he didn’t know what happened to it.
NBC News also reported that Hunter Biden and his ex-wife Kathleen Buhle had an IRS lien against them for unpaid taxes amounting to $112,805.09 – though it’s unclear if this is connected to the ongoing investigation.
Buhle, however, in their divorce documents listed ‘a large diamond’ among Hunter Biden’s possessions.
She valued the diamond at $80,000. Hunter Biden said it was worth closer to $10,000.
Ye was later detained by Chinese authorities as part of an anti-corruption investigation, The New Yorker said, and a deal he and Hunter Biden were working on in Louisiana fell through. Hunter Biden told the magazine he didn’t believe Ye was a ‘shady character at all’ and called what happened ‘bad luck.’
Reporters at CNN said they had already been working on a story about the federal investigation and had asked for comment when the statement from the Biden-Harris transition team came out.
Joe Biden’s Wednesday statement echoed the support he gave for his son during the first presidential debate against Trump, who mocked Hunter Biden for his drug use.
Biden had just finished talking about Beau Biden when the president interjected, ‘Are you talking about Hunter? He got thrown out of the military for cocaine use.’
‘My son, like a lot of people, like a lot of people you know at home, had a drug problem. He’s fixed it, he’s worked on it. And I’m proud of him. I’m proud of my son,’ the former vice president said then.