Updated Sep 14, 2023, 4:55pm EDT
politicsNorth America

Hunter Biden indicted on gun charges

Hunter Biden
REUTERS/Julia Nikhinson/File Photo

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The News

Hunter Biden was indicted Thursday on three federal gun-related charges.

The indictment charges the president’s son with allegedly failing to disclose his drug use while buying a firearm, and for possessing a firearm while addicted to a substance.

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Know More

In July, Hunter Biden was set to plead guilty to two federal tax crimes, but that deal fell through. According to filings, he had reached an agreement with the Department of Justice to plead guilty to the tax charges and avoid being prosecuted for the unlawful possession of a gun while addicted to a substance. A judge voiced concerns about the scope of the deal, leading to its unraveling.

A U.S. attorney who had been investigating Biden was appointed as special counsel in the case by Attorney General Merrick Garland in August.

The indictment alleges that Biden bought a revolver in 2018 and falsely said on a form that he wasn’t addicted to any substances.

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The View From Capitol Hill

House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., who has argued that Hunter Biden has been given preferential treatment by the Justice Department, minimized the indictment.

“This is the least of all the crimes he has committed and the one crime that you can’t tie his father to,” he told reporters. “I don’t think that anyone that’s keeping up with this investigation that wants to see the truth come out is really impressed with this indictment.”

Meanwhile, Democrats used the news to push back on allegations by Republicans that the rule of law is being applied unfairly.

Hunter Biden is “entitled to due process and the presumption of innocence the way Donald Trump is and we should support the rule of law as it applies to all criminal suspects and defendants in the country,” Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, told reporters.

Rep. Dan Goldman, D-N.Y. said that the DOJ has investigated for years and that Hunter Biden “should be held accountable” if he committed crimes.

“Hunter Biden is a private citizen. He is not the president of the United States. He is not going to be impeached,” Goldman said, days after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced that Republicans are opening an impeachment inquiry into President Biden, despite having no direct evidence of wrongdoing by the president.

— Kadia Goba contributed to this report.