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The Justice Department is considering a new move after coming under heavy criticism for a “sweetheart deal” given to first son Hunter Biden, according to a Sunday report.
The Daily Mail cited a Department of Justice (DoJ) official who said there are ongoing discussions about potentially postponing Hunter Biden’s plea hearing amid outrage over the deal and accusations that Attorney General Merrick Garland provided false information to Congress regarding the criminal investigation involving the Biden family.
The outlet noted further: “On July 26 a Delaware federal judge is set to decide whether to accept the First Son’s plea deal with prosecutors over two tax misdemeanors. Republican lawmakers are calling for Judge Maryellen Noreika to toss out the ‘slap on the wrist’ and ‘sweetheart’ deal entirely, after whistleblowers from the IRS who investigated Hunter for five years say that he could instead have been charged with a raft of more serious tax and corruption crimes. Now, a legal filing reveals the DoJ is considering delaying the finalizing of the plea deal amid the opprobrium.”
Conservative think tank the Heritage Foundation has filed a lawsuit against the Justice Department for not releasing the communication records of Delaware prosecutor David Weiss. They are seeking these records under the Freedom of Information Act.
According to a court filing made by Heritage last week, there was a phone call on June 29 between their lawyer and DoJ counsel Jason Lynch, in which the Justice official reportedly made the surprising admission.
Samuel Dewey, a lawyer representing the organization, brought to the attention of the DOJ attorney that Heritage had the option to formally request the federal judge presiding over Hunter’s criminal case to postpone the scheduled plea hearing on July 26. The purpose of the delay would be to provide the group with additional time to thoroughly analyze and disclose Weiss’ records, thereby facilitating a comprehensive assessment of the prosecutor’s agreement.
“DoJ Counsel indicated that Plaintiffs were ‘absolutely right’ that the Department could file such a motion and that DoJ Counsel would take that point back to the ‘District’ (presumably speaking of the District of Delaware),” wrote Dewey.
His filing indicates that the DOJ could now be in the process of deliberating whether to seek a delay in Hunter’s hearing regarding the plea bargain.
“They have the capability to move the plea deal, though they didn’t indicate any likelihood they would,” Heritage Foundation Oversight Director Mike Howell told The Daily Mail.
“The public has an interest to assess for themselves: is this a sweetheart deal? It certainly appears to be,” Howell added. “This information needs to be out, and it’s in the public interest for it to be out prior to any plea being signed off on.”
Howell stated that the Foundation is actively seeking corroborating evidence to support the whistleblowers’ assertions that Weiss faced obstacles in prosecuting the crimes of the First Son in various districts, including Central California and Washington D.C.
Garland informed the Senate that Weiss possessed the necessary authority to prosecute Hunter for crimes across the United States. But, during a congressional hearing, IRS investigators testified that Weiss encountered obstacles from prosecutors appointed by Biden in Washington D.C. and Los Angeles, which prevented him from pursuing felony tax charges.
“If the whistleblowers are correct, U.S. Attorney Weiss’ Office should have responsive records that will corroborate the whistleblowers,” Dewey wrote in his filing.
“There are events so grave—so essential—to our constitutional order that if we are to keep our Republic, the American people must have a full accounting of the facts,” he added. “A state of affairs where there is a substantial question as to whether the Attorney General misled Congress is intolerable. That is why production of the records sought by Plaintiffs is essential. And why it is essential now.”
The DOJ responded by saying officials would attempt to produce some records but won’t hand them over until after Hunter’s July 26 plea hearing.
Once “Noreika signs off on the deal – the details of which are still secret – it is unlikely it can be reversed,” the Daily Mail noted.