Hunter Biden trial: Jury begins deliberations in federal gun case - Hindustan Times
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Hunter Biden trial: Jury begins deliberations in federal gun case

AFP | | Posted by Arya Vaishnavi
Jun 11, 2024 01:58 AM IST

Hunter Biden did not take the stand during the one-week trial held in the Biden hometown of Wilmington, Delaware.

Jury deliberations began on Monday in the trial of Hunter Biden on federal gun charges, a historic first criminal prosecution of the child of a sitting US president.

WILMINGTON, DELAWARE - JUNE 10: Hunter Biden, son of U.S. President Joe Biden, joined by his wife Melissa Cohen Biden, arrive to the J. Caleb Boggs Federal Building on June 10, 2024 in Wilmington, Delaware. The trial for Hunter Biden's felony gun charges resumes today with the defense�s team. Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by Anna Moneymaker / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)(Getty Images via AFP)
WILMINGTON, DELAWARE - JUNE 10: Hunter Biden, son of U.S. President Joe Biden, joined by his wife Melissa Cohen Biden, arrive to the J. Caleb Boggs Federal Building on June 10, 2024 in Wilmington, Delaware. The trial for Hunter Biden's felony gun charges resumes today with the defense�s team. Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by Anna Moneymaker / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)(Getty Images via AFP)

Hunter Biden, 54, the son of President Joe Biden, is accused of lying about his illegal drug use when he bought a handgun in 2018, a felony.

His trial comes as his father is seeking reelection, and less than two weeks after the conviction on business fraud charges of Donald Trump, the likely Republican presidential nominee in November.

The 12-member jury began deliberations after prosecutors and Hunter Biden's defense team presented their closing arguments, CNN and other US media reported.

Hunter Biden did not take the stand during the one-week trial held in the Biden hometown of Wilmington, Delaware.

The proceedings, along with another case in which Hunter Biden faces tax evasion charges in California, complicates Democrats' efforts to keep the focus on Trump, the first former president ever to be convicted of a crime.

First Lady Jill Biden attended several days of the trial. The president did not attend but said he and Jill were "proud" of Hunter Biden.

"As the President, I don't and won't comment on pending federal cases, but as a Dad, I have boundless love for my son, confidence in him, and respect for his strength," Biden said in a statement.

In addition to being a political distraction, Hunter Biden's legal woes have reopened painful emotional wounds for the family from his time as a drug addict.

His brother Beau died from cancer in 2015, and his sister Naomi died as an infant in a 1972 car crash that also killed their mother, Neilia, Joe Biden's first wife.

The Yale-trained lawyer and lobbyist-turned-artist is charged with falsely stating when buying a .38 caliber revolver in 2018 that he was not using drugs illegally.

He is also charged with illegal possession of the firearm, which he had for just 11 days in October of that year.

The president's son, who has written unsparingly about his addiction, claimed that at the moment he bought the revolver he did not consider himself to be an addict.

If found guilty, Hunter Biden could face 25 years in prison, although as a first-time offender jail time is unlikely.

Hunter Biden has long been the target of hard-right Republicans, and Trump allies have investigated him at length in Congress on allegations of corruption and influence-peddling. No charges have ever been brought.

Hunter Biden's business dealings in China and Ukraine have also formed the basis for attempts by Republican lawmakers to initiate impeachment proceedings against his father. Those efforts too have gone nowhere.

The White House has said there would be no presidential pardon for Hunter Biden in case of a conviction.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.
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