House Republicans issue criminal referrals against James and Hunter Biden

 

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Washington — The Republican leaders of the three House committees leading the impeachment inquiry into President Biden sent criminal referrals to the Justice Department on Wednesday recommending charges against Hunter Biden and James Biden for making false statements to Congress.

The GOP chairmen of the Judiciary, Oversight and Ways and Means panels claimed the lies from Hunter Biden, the president’s son, and James Biden, his brother, implicate Mr. Biden’s role in what Republicans have alleged is an effort to profit off his family’s overseas business dealings while he was vice president.

The president has denied any wrongdoing, and the House GOP’s investigation has yet to yield any evidence of improper conduct by Mr. Biden. The Justice Department declined to comment on the referrals.

“Hunter Biden and James Biden made provably false statements to the Oversight Committee and the Judiciary Committee about key aspects of the impeachment inquiry, in what appears to be a conscious effort to hinder the investigation’s focus on President Joe Biden,” Oversight Committee chairman James Comer, Judiciary Committee chairman Jim Jordan and Ways and Means Committee chairman Jason Smith wrote in a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and special counsel David Weiss.

Weiss was appointed special counsel last August to oversee the Justice Department’s investigation into Hunter Biden. He has brought tax and gun charges against the president’s son, and Hunter Biden has pleaded not guilty. A trial in the case stemming from Hunter Biden’s purchase of a firearm while he was a drug user began this week in Delaware.

The criminal referrals from Republicans arose from a transcribed interview lawmakers conducted with James Biden on Feb. 21 and a deposition with Hunter Biden on Feb. 28.

Republicans claimed Hunter Biden “falsely distanced himself” from a firm called Rosemont Seneca Bohai, LLC, and lied about whether he held positions there. They said the committees received documents showing Hunter Biden was the firm’s corporate secretary. Republicans also alleged the president’s son told lawmakers an “entirely fictitious account” regarding text messages he sent to a Chinese business partner that mentioned his father was present with him at the time the messages were drafted.

The referral for the president’s brother stems from his alleged testimony that Mr. Biden didn’t meet one of Hunter Biden’s business partners in 2017, which Republicans claimed was contradicted by the business partner, Tony Bobulinski, as well as Hunter Biden.

“The nature of these false statements is not lost on the Committees: every instance implicates Joe Biden’s knowledge of and role in his family’s influence peddling,” Comer, Jordan and Smith wrote.

They claimed that the allegedly false testimony is part of a “conscious, calculated effort to insulate Joe Biden from the duly authorized impeachment inquiry.”

Republicans have been investigating alleged wrongdoing by the president and his family for more than a year, but their impeachment inquiry, which the GOP-led House voted to formalize in December, has largely stalled.

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