Judge rejects Hunter Biden's plea to dismiss tax case, US President's son to undergo trial in June - Hindustan Times
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Judge rejects Hunter Biden's plea to dismiss tax case, US President's son to undergo trial in June

Apr 02, 2024 08:36 AM IST

President Joe Biden's son to undergo trial in June after federal judge rejected his plea to quash tax

In a significant development on Monday, a federal judge in California rejected Hunter Biden’s efforts to dismiss his tax charges, allowing the criminal case against the president’s son to proceed. The order has paved the way for a trial in June.

US President Joe Biden, left, and Hunter Biden, son of US President Joe Biden, right, during the Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, US, on Monday, April 1, 2024. (Bloomberg)
US President Joe Biden, left, and Hunter Biden, son of US President Joe Biden, right, during the Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, US, on Monday, April 1, 2024. (Bloomberg)

What are the charges against Hunter Biden?

President Joe Biden's son is confronting three felony charges and six misdemeanor charges related to tax evasion, filing a false return, and failure to pay taxes from 2016 to 2019. He has pleaded not guilty to all nine charges. His legal team contended last month that the case was politically motivated and compromised by two IRS agents who subsequently became whistleblowers.

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Despite filing eight separate motions to dismiss the charges, each citing different legal arguments, all of Biden's motions were turned down.

Judge Mark Scarsi dismissed Biden’s claim that the case was politically motivated, highlighting that Biden’s attorneys failed to provide evidence to support this assertion.

“The motion is remarkable in that it fails to include a single declaration, exhibit, or request for judicial notice,” Scarsi stated. “Instead, Defendant cites portions of various Internet news sources, social media posts, and legal blogs. These citations, however, are not evidence.”

Judge Scarsi further emphasized that the majority of the sources, which were mainly media reports about the case, “contain multiple levels of hearsay.”

Judge rejects Hunter Biden's allegation of selective and vindictive prosecution

Additionally, the judge rejected Biden’s allegation of selective and vindictive prosecution.

“Defendant fails to present a reasonable inference, let alone clear evidence, of discriminatory effect and discriminatory purpose,” Scarsi wrote. “Accordingly, the selective prosecution claim fails.”

Biden’s legal team had also argued that the case should be dismissed due to “outrageous government conduct,” pointing out that two former IRS agents had later served as witnesses in a House GOP investigation into Biden.

Ruling vindicates Weiss, a Republican who was appointed by Trump to his former post as the US attorney in Delaware. Weiss’ prosecutors have defended the integrity and nonpartisan nature of their work — and said in court last week that it was “insulting” to suggest they were taking their cues from Trump or GOP lawmakers.

However, Scarsi did not entertain this argument, noting that there is no precedent for dismissing a case based on “outrageous government conduct.” He added that Biden’s claims did not meet the high standard required for dismissal.

This California tax case is one of two legal challenges Biden is facing as a result of special counsel David Weiss’s investigation. Additionally, the president’s son is contending with three gun-related charges in Delaware, to which he has pleaded not guilty. This plea followed the breakdown of a plea deal between him and prosecutors last year.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Vertika Kanaujia is Editor Audience Growth at Hindustan Times and oversees the website’s coverage of business news, health, technology and internet culture. She is a Chevening Scholar and a Columbia Journalism University Fellow. Vertika has been a journalist for more than 18 years. After starting her career as a business journalist in TV she has worked with various leading news channels. You can email her at vertika.kanaujia@htdigital.in.

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