The former chief of the Justice Department’s tax division is calling on the federal judge overseeing Hunter Biden’s plea bargain with U.S. prosecutors to reject the agreement.
Eileen O’Connor, who ran the DOJ tax division from 2001 to 2007, published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal Wednesday outlining why the plea agreement Hunter Biden struck with the Delaware U.S. attorney’s office ought to be dismissed.
“Judges can reject plea agreements,” O’Connor wrote. “That would be an appropriate disposition here.”
O’Connor summarized the blockbuster revelations from a pair of whistleblowers within the Internal Revenue Service who came forward with allegations of DOJ interference in their criminal tax probe investigating Hunter Biden. The IRS investigation into the younger Biden began in 2018 as an “offshoot” of a federal probe into a foreign pornography ring. The FBI even came across Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop a year later, and verified the computer’s authenticity, but refused to share its full contents with the IRS.
“The Justice Department’s alleged foot-dragging and refusal to permit IRS special agents to follow the evidence allowed the statutes of limitations for 2014 and 2015 to expire, notwithstanding that Mr. Biden’s defense counsel had, according to [whistleblower Gary] Shapley, agreed to more than one extension,” O’Connor wrote. “Far worse, Mr. Garland’s failure to designate Mr. Weiss a special counsel essentially guaranteed that Mr. Biden wouldn’t be prosecuted for any of his alleged tax crimes.”
Hunter Biden ultimately struck a plea deal with federal prosecutors that was limited to two misdemeanor tax crimes and felony firearm possession. Biden would avoid prosecution for the firearm felony charge, however, contingent upon 24 months of sobriety and forfeiture of gun rights.
“The ‘criminal information’ — the charging document in the absence of an indictment,” O’Connor explained, “states that Mr. Biden received but didn’t pay federal taxes on ‘taxable income in excess of $1,500,000.00’ in 2017 and 2018.”
“House Oversight Committee Republicans claim to have seen Treasury Department suspicious-activity reports suggesting that Mr. Biden received vastly more than that during the years the IRS was investigating,” O’Connor wrote. “Congress, in fulfillment of its oversight obligation, must learn and share with the American public what evidence the IRS gathered, what evidence its agents weren’t permitted to obtain, and what charges might have been brought if they had.”
The federal judge assigned to Hunter Biden’s upcoming hearing, U.S. District Judge Maryellen Noreika, was appointed by former President Donald Trump and supported by Delaware’s two Democrat senators. According to the New York Post, Noreika has a history of political contributions to Arkansas Republican Sen. Tom Cotton’s 2014 campaign, Utah Republican Sen. Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign, former Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign, and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum’s 2006 Senate campaign.
Noreika also reportedly made a $1,000 contribution to Hillary Clinton in 2008 and to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in 2009.