Timeline: What Did The Feds Not Do About Alleged Biden Family Corruption And When Did They Not Do It?

Hunter Biden
Source: Screenshot YouTube Source: Screenshot YouTube

By Ben Weingarten for RealClearWire

A timeline of events focusing on federal authorities’ pursuit of alleged Biden family corruption. This resource will be updated as warranted.

Nov. 2018-June 2020:
Hunter Biden Probe Begins;
President Trump Impeached While Pursuing Biden-Ukraine Information;
Alleged Justice Department Undermining of Probe Begins

Nov. 2018: The Internal Revenue Service’s Washington D.C. office opens investigation into Hunter Biden, code name “Sportsman,” as an offshoot of a probe into a foreign-based amateur online pornography platform.

According to IRS Special Agent Joseph Ziegler, the case agent who will later turn whistleblower, evidence will emerge paid prostitutes to cross state lines – potential Mann Act violations. It is not clear whether the Justice Department pursues.

Jan. 2019: According to Special Agent Ziegler, the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office and FBI open a separate Hunter Biden investigation.

March/April 2019: Ziegler develops criminal charging material approved by IRS superiors and sent to Justice Department’s tax division for review. The two entities will work jointly on the case, as is customary. The Washington, D.C. and Delaware investigations will be merged.

April 25, 2019: Joe Biden announces his candidacy for president.

Aug. 15, 2019: Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) commences what will become a multi-year investigation into Hunter Biden and Joe Biden’s brother James and their “financial connections to foreign governments and questionable foreign nationals.”

Sept. 24, 2019: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) opens impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump alleging Trump withheld Ukrainian aid to pressure officials to investigate the activities of Hunter and Joe Biden vis-à-vis the firing of Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin. In 2016, Biden leveraged $1 billion in U.S. aid to force Shokin’s firing. Shokin had been investigating Burisma, the Ukrainian energy company on whose board Hunter Biden had sat. Prosecutors will scrutinize Hunter over alleged tax crimes stemming from the hundreds of thousands of dollars Burisma paid him annually.

Oct. 2019: FBI learns that a Delaware computer repair shop obtained Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop, and the following month verifies its authenticity.

Dec. 2019: FBI takes possession of the laptop and notifies IRS it “likely contained evidence of tax crimes,” according to IRS Supervisory Special Agent Gary Shapley. Shapley, Ziegler’s colleague, will lead his investigatory team and also turn whistleblower.

Dec. 8, 2019: In an interview, Joe Biden says “I don’t know what he was doing” regarding Hunter Biden’s Burisma work.

Dec. 18, 2019: House votes to impeach Donald Trump for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Jan. 27, 2020: Email evidence indicates that Hunter Biden has meeting with impeachment lawyers in Trump-Ukraine proceedings.

Feb. 5, 2020: Senate acquits Trump on a party-line vote, concluding first impeachment.

March 6-April 1, 2020: Shapley’s team prepares physical search warrants in Hunter Biden case. Having established probable cause for the warrants, IRS plans to conduct about 15 contemporaneous interviews. Shapley claims career DOJ officials halt IRS’ actions.

April 8, 2020: Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) drops out of Democrat presidential primary, making Joe Biden the presumptive nominee.

June 16, 2020: Shapley tells IRS superiors “DOJ Tax has made a concerted effort to drag their feet concerning conducting search warrants and interviewing key witnesses in an effort to push those actions to a timeframe where they can invoke the Department of Justice rule of thumb concerning [ceasing activities] affecting elections.” Shapley alleges superiors took no action.

June 2020-Dec. 2021:
Evidence of Influence-Peddling with Nexus to Joe Biden Grows;
Alleged Sabotage of Hunter Biden Probe Intensifies

June 30, 2020: FBI informant tells handler that Burisma founder Mykola Zlochevsky told him he had been coerced into paying Joe and Hunter Biden $5 million apiece in exchange for help getting Shokin fired. This is memorialized in an FBI FD-1023 form. Shapley’s team will not see the document until years later, after being thrown off the case.

Aug.-Sept. 2020: IRS agents obtain WhatsApp messages between an executive from Chinese energy company CEFC and Hunter Biden from summer 2017, in which Biden says, “I am sitting here with my father and we would like to understand why the commitment made has not been fulfilled,” regarding a deal with the company. Biden threatens that should the deal not be resolved with the Chinese government-connected company’s executives – “I will make certain that between the man sitting next to me and every person he knows … you will regret not following my direction.”

Investigators believe Biden was staying at the family’s Delaware beach guest house at this time. They seek location data for messages to corroborate in part whether Joe was with Hunter.

Sept. 3, 2020: Delaware Assistant U.S. Attorney Lesley Wolf shoots down plan to nail down the Bidens’ location during the China call. According to Shapley, Wolf says while “a lot of evidence in our investigation would be found in the guest house … there is no way we will get that approved.” Wolf cites “optics” as a “driving factor in the decision.”

Shapley also recalls prosecutors did not want investigators reviewing CEFC communications, irrespective of any potential national security implications.

Wolf also indicates that a search warrant for emails from Blue Star Strategies, a Democrat-tied firm that lobbied for Burisma, in Shapley’s words, “would likely not get approved.” The agent adds, “This was a significant blow to the Foreign Agents Registration Act piece of the investigation” – that is, whether Hunter Biden lobbied for foreign individuals and entities as an unregistered foreign agent, a felony.

Sept. 4, 2020: Justice Department issues “cease and desist” of investigative activities in Hunter Biden case in run-up to the presidential election.

Sept. 7, 2021: Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), then ranking member of the House Oversight Committee, begins probe into sales of Hunter Biden’s paintings after he turns to art as a career. The sales raise ethical and national security concerns, in the view of House Republicans, given the lack of clarity about who the buyers are. The parties pursued will largely ignore requests while Republicans are in minority. The White House waves off ethics concerns.

Sept. 23, 2020: Sen. Grassley and Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) release report revealing “millions of dollars in questionable financial transactions between Hunter Biden and his associates and foreign individuals, including the wife of the former mayor of Moscow and individuals with ties to the Chinese Communist Party.”

Oct. 14, 2020: New York Post breaks the story of the abandoned Hunter Biden laptop. Among the paper’s revelations: Hunter introduced then-Vice President Biden to a top Burisma executive in April 2015, months before the vice president would help get Shokin fired. This is at odds with the Democrat presidential nominee’s claim he had “never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings.” Twitter and Facebook suppress the story.

Oct. 19, 2020: Politico publishes letter signed by 51 prominent intelligence community officials indicating the New York Post’s story “has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

Oct. 20, 2020: Investigators seek to do a “walk by” to confirm the location of and security around Hunter Biden’s California residence in preparation for an interview. DOJ Tax objects.

Oct. 22, 2020: Shapley raises concern to prosecutors that his team has not been granted access to Hunter Biden’s laptop. Assistant U.S. Attorney Wolf confirms prosecutors kept it from investigators, which Shapley calls “unprecedented.”

Wolf also indicates prosecutors would not permit a physical search warrant on Hunter Biden.

During the final presidential debate that evening, Biden rebuts claims about his family’s business dealings, citing the intelligence community letter. Biden also says, “My son has not made money, in terms of this thing about … China … The only guy that made money from China is this guy [Trump] … nobody else has made money from China.” Biden also states unequivocally, “I have not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life.”

Oct. 23, 2020: Justice Department and FBI Special Agents from the Pittsburgh field office brief Wolf, among others, on contents of FD-1023 alleged Burisma-Biden bribes. It’s later learned that the Pittsburgh office believed that the allegations seemed credible, was partially corroborated, and merited investigation.

Nov. 3-Nov. 7, 2020: The 2020 presidential election. Joe Biden wins and elected as the 46th U.S. president.

Nov. 9, 2020: Sen. Grassley sends letter to then-Attorney General William Barr calling on Justice Department to review evidence that Hunter Biden and James Biden may have violated the Foreign Agent Registrations Act based on their dealings with CEFC.

Nov. 18, 2020: Sens. Grassley and Johnson release a supplement to their report on potential conflicts of interest stemming from the Biden family’s foreign business, including additional CEFC findings.

Dec. 3, 2020: Investigators prepare for a Dec. 8 “day of action,” to consist of document requests and some 12 interviews, including of Hunter Biden. As investigators meet with prosecution team at Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office, Lesley Wolf allegedly indicates she does not want them asking questions of subjects pertaining to Joe Biden.

Dec. 7, 2020: Investigators plan to notify Hunter Biden and his Secret Service protection on the morning of Dec. 8 that he will be approached that day for an interview as part of an official investigation.

Deviating from the plan, FBI headquarters notifies Secret Service headquarters and President-elect Biden’s transition team of coming interview, in Shapley’s words “essentially tipp[ing] off a group of people very close to President Biden and Hunter Biden,” and giving “this group an opportunity to obstruct the approach on the witnesses.”

Dec. 8, 2020: Hunter Biden’s attorneys call Shapley and his FBI counterpart, indicating Hunter will not participate in an interview. Investigators secure only “one substantive interview” on day of action, from Hunter Biden business associate Rob Walker. During that interview, skirting Wolf’s instructions, investigators briefly pursue a line of questioning wherein Walker discusses Joe’s involvement in Hunter’s business.

Dec. 9, 2020: News of Hunter probe becomes public, with reporting suggesting investigation extends beyond Hunter’s taxes to potential money laundering and financial ties to foreign figures and businesses. Hunter releases a statement: “I take this matter very seriously but I am confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately.”

Dec. 10-14, 2020: From the “day of action,” investigators find that documents concerning one of Hunter’s business entities, Owasco, were archived in a northern Virginia storage unit. Investigators prepare to search it. Wolf, according to Shapley, tips off Hunter’s defense counsel to the planned search, possibly thwarting a potential investigative coup.

March 2, 2021: In a Shapley-convened briefing, investigators mention possibility of blowing whistle on the Justice Department’s handling of the case.

May 3, 2021: In memo to superiors, Shapley indicates probe “has been hampered and slowed by claims of potential election meddling. Through interviews and review of evidence obtained, it appears there may be campaign finance criminal violations … Wolf stated on the last prosecution team meeting that she did not want any of the agents to look into the allegation.”

Aug. 18, 2021-Oct. 21, 2021: Wolf suggests DOJ Tax will not approve another set of desired interviews. According to Shapley, Wolf indicates that the investigative team would get “into hot water” specifically if it pursued planned interviews of the president’s grandchildren over charges made with Hunter Biden’s credit card possibly by his kids.

Oct. 13, 2021: Hunter Biden’s friend Kevin Morris loans him $1.4 million to settle outstanding taxes. Subsequent reporting suggests that all told, Morris will pay off well over $2 million in delinquent taxes on behalf of the president’s son.

Related: Gaetz Calls McCarthy’s Bluff, Dares Him To Sign Hunter Biden Subpoena

Jan. 2022-Jan. 2023:
Prosecution Sought and Denied;
IRS Whistleblowers Blindsided by Weiss’ Apparent Lack of Authority

Jan. 27, 2022: IRS recommends charging Hunter Biden for felony tax evasion and filing of false tax returns in 2014, 2018, and 2019, and misdemeanor failure to file or pay taxes for 2015-2019. Such charges each have a six-year statute of limitations.

Feb. 25, 2022: IRS sends report outlining charges to Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office. Wolf and, according to Shapley, her DOJ Tax counterpart support the IRS’ recommendations. DOJ Tax prepares memo recommending prosecution, the IRS whistleblowers learn. They will not see the memo.

March 2022: DOJ Tax presents prosecution memo to U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia laying out alleged offenses chargeable in that venue. Prosecutors aim to charge Hunter Biden criminally over foreign income from Burisma “and a scheme to evade his income taxes through a partnership with a convicted felon,” Devon Archer, as well as “potential FARA issues.” Shapley learns the Biden-appointed U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, Matthew Graves, reviews the memo but refuses to partner with his Delaware counterpart. “We in the IRS didn’t realize at the time that meant there was no ability to charge there” – that is, that without Graves’ buy-in, Weiss as Delaware U.S. Attorney could not bring his case in Washington, D.C. – Shapley testifies.

During this period, DOJ requests of IRS and FBI all “management-level emails and documents on this case.” Whistleblowers indicate that typically such materials are collected at sub-management level in advance of discovery in connection with an impending case. Shapley provides “sensitive case reports and memorandums” documenting “DOJ’s continued unethical conduct,” which he had been providing superiors for several years.

Facing impending charges, and with statutes of limitation set to lapse on 2014 and 2015 tax offenses, Hunter’s defense counsel reportedly calls for prosecutors not to charge, indicating willingness to sign statute of limitation extensions. Prosecutors and Biden’s counsel will agree to multiple extensions.

March 14, 2022: Prosecutors have first taxpayer conference with defense counsel, allowing target to dispute charges.

March 28-29, 2022: Sens. Grassley and Johnson release financial records corroborating prior reports on Hunter and James Biden’s business with Chinese nationals connected to the Chinese Communist Party.

April 26, 2022: Attorney General Merrick Garland defends Hunter Biden investigation before Senate Appropriations Committee, indicating “There will not be interference of any political or improper kind” in the probe, that it will be free of “any influence from the White House,” and that Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss, the “Trump appointee” overseeing the case “is in charge.”

The same day, according to Special Agent Ziegler’s deposition, prosecutors have second taxpayer conference with Hunter Biden’s defense counsel. During that conference, Politico later reports, Biden’s lawyers present a 100-page presentation to dissuade DOJ from charging him. Lawyers focus on casting the prosecution as political – driven from start by Trump – and suggest that to carry it out would damage DOJ’s reputation.

May 9, 2022: Sens. Grassley and Johnson send letter to Weiss asking whether he possesses financial records to the Bidens’ China dealings, including those the senators had publicized. Weiss does not answer, with the Justice Department interceding.

July 25, 2022: Sen. Grassley writes to AG Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray alleging whistleblowers disclosed to his office that in fall 2020, the FBI obtained information about Hunter Biden’s alleged criminal financial and related activity, only to bury and halt investigation of it by claiming it was disinformation.

Aug. 12, 2022: IRS whistleblowers learn that Chris Clark, Hunter Biden’s counsel, warns prosecutors that if they charge Hunter, they will be committing “career suicide.”

Late Aug.-Early Sept. 2022: In meeting with investigators, Weiss indicates he agrees with IRS team regarding charging 2014-15 tax years, but says DOJ Tax has doubts about case. When asked when Weiss will charge, he says, according to Special Agent Ziegler, “hopefully end of September. It was kind of up in the air.”

Mid-Sept. 2022: E. Martin Estrada is appointed U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California, the proper venue for charging tax offenses from 2016-19 based on Hunter’s residence there. Prosecutors present charges to Estrada’s office the week he is confirmed.

Sept. 22, 2022: Wolf tells investigators that prosecutors will not take action until after midterm elections, despite DOJ’s Public Integrity Section never issuing such an order.

Oct. 6, 2022: The Washington Post publishes article indicating there is sufficient evidence to charge Hunter with tax crimes and a false statement related to a gun purchase. Chris Clark accuses investigators of leaking information and calls on Justice Department to pursue leakers.

Oct. 7, 2022: In a meeting, Weiss tells colleagues at IRS and FBI that, according to a direct quote recounted by Shapley, “I’m not the deciding official on whether charges are filed.” Weiss also states that D.C. U.S. Attorney Graves will not allow him to bring charges there. The FBI special agent in charge of the FBI’s Baltimore office, overseeing the investigation and present at the meeting, will later reportedly challenge these claims. Weiss also indicates he had asked for special counsel authority from DOJ after Graves declined the charges and was denied. Weiss says he will not be bringing charges against Hunter for the 2014-15 tax years, the statute of limitations for which are to expire in Nov. 2022. “Everyone in that meeting seemed shellshocked … I felt misled” regarding Weiss’ apparent lack of authority, Shapley testified.

Oct. 12, 2022: IRS criminal investigation team conducts final interview.

Oct. 13, 2022: Sen. Grassley delivers letter to AG Garland, FBI Director Wray, and Weiss indicating that based on protected whistleblower disclosures to his office, “the FBI has within its possession significant, impactful and voluminous evidence with respect to potential criminal conduct by Hunter Biden and James Biden.” Letter calls into question whether authorities have pursued the leads whistleblowers detailed to Grassley concerning an alleged pay-to-play scheme involving CEFC and potential criminal conduct involving Hunter’s business with and its owner Zlochevsky.

Oct. 17, 2022: Last meeting in which prosecutors include Shapley’s IRS criminal investigations team.

Oct. 24, 2022: Prosecutors ask IRS for Shapley’s records, in which he had documented alleged prosecutorial misconduct during pendency of case. Shapley and Ziegler will both testify that requesting management communications is highly unusual. The agents indicate that subsequently, the IRS team will be phased out of case.

Oct. 26, 2022: Sens. Grassley and Johnson send letter to Weiss stating that in light of DOJ’s failure to respond to oversight requests concerning their congressional investigation, they are delivering more than 200 pages of records “relating to the Biden family’s connections to the Chinese regime and persons connected to its military and intelligence elements.”

Oct. 31, 2022: In a letter to Weiss, Clark threatens to put President Biden on the stand should the DOJ charge Hunter criminally.

Nov. 2022: After previously agreeing to multiple statute of limitation extensions regarding the 2014 and 2015 tax offenses with Hunter’s counsel concerning Burisma, prosecutors let the statutes of limitation expire – despite willingness of Biden team to continue extending, according to Shapley.

Nov. 15, 2022: Donald Trump announces his candidacy for president.

Late 2022: The New York Times reports that by this time, Weiss “had found some evidence but determined that he did not have sufficient grounds to indict [Hunter] Biden for major felonies.” It adds that one source indicated Weiss preferred not to bring any charges, even misdemeanors, though another denied it.

Jan. 2023: Shapley learns U.S. Attorney Estrada declines to bring charges in the Central District of California.

During this month, Clark will reportedly travel to Delaware and plead his case to Weiss to end the investigation into Hunter, indicating that how he handles the decision could have reputational consequences.

Related: Disgraced Agent Peter Strzok: FBI Needs Protection From Americans Outraged They Haven’t Been Tough On Hunter Biden

Feb. 2023-May 2023:
Hunter’s Counsel Pleads Case Over Weiss’ Head;
IRS Whistleblowers Emerge – and Face a Chill;
Plea Deal Develops

Feb. 1, 2023: Clark contacts multiple officials at Main Justice seeking contacts to whom he can appeal should Weiss charge Hunter.

March 1, 2023: Under questioning from Sen. Grassley during a Judiciary Committee hearing, the attorney general testifies that Weiss “has full authority to make … referrals … or to bring cases in other districts if he needs to do that. He has been advised that he should get anything he needs. I have not heard anything from that office that suggests they are not able to do anything that the U.S. Attorney wants them to do.” Garland adds, “I promised to leave the matter of Hunter Biden in the hands of [Weiss and] … I have pledged not to interfere with that investigation … I have carried through on my pledge.”

March 16, 2023: House Oversight Committee releases records showing $1.3 million in payments from 2015-2017 flowing from Biden family associate Rob Walker to Hunter and James Biden, Joe’s late son Beau’s widow Hallie, and a fourth Biden. The bulk of the funds appear to come from Chinese energy company State Energy HK Limited.

March 18, 2023: Donald Trump says he will be indicted in New York.

April 4, 2023: Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg indicts Trump on falsified business record charges pertaining to a $130,000 nondisclosure payment to adult film performer Stormy Daniels.

April 19, 2023: Attorney on behalf of Shapley sends letter to relevant congressional committees indicating Shapley’s desire to make protected whistleblower disclosures to Congress. Letter leaks to Wall Street Journal.

April 24-25, 2023: Associate Deputy Attorney General Bradley Weinsheimer contacts Shapley’s counsel asking him for a call in light of Wall Street Journal reporting, and the two parties speak. The Daily Mail will later report that Shapley’s counsel felt Weinsheimer “seemed concerned and keen to investigate, and promised he would get Shapley’s team legal permission to share all the details of his allegations.”

April 26, 2023: Chris Clark finally lands sought-after meeting with Main DOJ, sitting down with Weinsheimer, alongside Weiss.

April 27, 2023: Under questioning in a House Ways and Means Committee hearing, IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel testifies that “there will be no retaliation for anyone making an allegation or called into a whistleblower hotline.”

May 3, 2023: Ranking Senate Budget Committee Member Grassley and House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.), submit letter to Garland and Wray indicating whistleblowers have disclosed the FBI possesses an FD-1023 alleging a criminal bribery scheme involving then-Vice President Biden and a foreign national. The congressmen indicate that it is “unclear what steps, if any, were taken to investigate the matter,” and that therefore they will be reviewing the matter. Comer issues subpoena calling on FBI to produce FD-1023 forms aimed at capturing the alleged Burisma-Biden bribe document.

May 10, 2023: House Oversight Committee releases bank records memo revealing Biden family business deals in Romania and China.

May 11, 2023: Weinsheimer thanks Clark for meeting, indicates Hunter Biden investigation is reaching end, and prosecutors are prepared to make a deal.

May 15, 2023: Shapley learns his team has been removed from the Hunter Biden case at DOJ’s request, which his counsel reports to relevant House committees.

That same day, Delaware Assistant U.S. Attorney Wolf calls Clark, proposing a deal whereby Hunter will not have to plead guilty through use of a deferred prosecution agreement – satisfying Clark’s reported “core demand” of prosecutors. Clark indicates defense will draft a proposed agreement accordingly.

May 16, 2023: House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (R-Mo.) requests briefing from IRS Commissioner regarding perceived retaliation against IRS whistleblower.

That same day, Weinsheimer speaks with Shapley’s counsel. In an apparent change in tone, Weinsheimer indicates that DOJ headquarters will not be involved in the whistleblowers’ case. All issues are to run through Weiss. Shapley lawyer Mark Lytle will later say that Weinsheimer, after making “earlier promises and assurances … seemed no longer interested.” His co-counsel, Tristan Leavitt, says he believes that Weinsheimer “wanted intel from Gary [Shapley] before his Hill testimony,” which would come weeks later.

May 18, 2023: IRS’ Ziegler sends letter to IRS leadership recounting criticism over its lack of action in connection with concerns he and colleagues raised during Hunter Biden case, and expressing disappointment over Ziegler and his team having been removed from it.

That day, Hunter Biden’s lawyers send two Delaware prosecutors, including Wolf, the first draft of a proposed deal under which Hunter will not have to plead guilty. The deal would give Biden immunity from other potential offenses authorities had investigated – which would include Foreign Agent Registration Act charges – should he pay taxes owed, among other conditions. Delaware U.S. Attorney’s office, sympathetic to proposal, shares its own suggested terms that do not require Biden to plead guilty.

May 19, 2023: Two superiors respond to Special Agent Ziegler’s email with a reminder that “you need to follow your chain of command.” They insinuate he may have made “unauthorized disclosures” by including “potential grand jury” material, and including recipients unable to receive such material.

That same day, Hunter Biden’s lawyers prepare a draft pretrial diversion agreement covering tax and gun issues, guaranteeing immunity from prosecution of offenses previously investigated, and stating that DOJ will dismiss charges if Biden upholds his end of deal – no guilty plea necessary.

May 22, 2023: Shapley’s counsel sends another letter to relevant House committees indicating the IRS is taking additional retaliatory measures aimed at intimidating whistleblowers into silence.

May 23, 2023: In a major reversal, Wolf tells Hunter Biden’s counsel that Weiss now wants Biden to plead guilty to two misdemeanor counts of failing to pay taxes.

May 24, 2023: In a CBS News interview, Shapley goes public with allegations DOJ “slow-walked” Hunter Biden probe.

May 25, 2023: IRS sends mass email to personnel instructing them as to proper protocol for reporting wrongdoing like that alleged in the Biden case. The email omits that such employees may bring their concerns to Congress.

Also that day, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) sends oversight letter to AG Garland requesting documents in connection with IRS whistleblowers’ removal from the Hunter Biden case.

May 26, 2023: Shapley testifies behind closed doors before House Ways and Means Committee to make protected whistleblower disclosures.

June 2023:
FBI Stonewalls Over Alleged Burisma-Biden Bribes;
Trump Indictments Grow;
Plea Deal Emerges;
Weiss Strains To Harmonize His Story With AG Garland About His Claimed Ultimate Authority

June 1, 2023: Ziegler testifies behind closed doors before the House Ways and Means Committee to make protected whistleblower disclosures.

June 2, 2023: After DOJ reportedly communicates to Hunter Biden’s counsel that he would need to plead guilty to tax charges, and counsel agrees he will do so for two misdemeanor counts of willfully failing to pay taxes – but not gun charge – Biden’s counsel expresses in email to Wolf that immunity is critical. Parties move forward on two-part deal consisting of plea agreement for tax charges and pretrial diversion agreement covering gun charge.

June 6, 2023: Sen. Grassley delivers speech linking July 25, 2022, allegation FBI had sat on and buried evidence of Hunter Biden’s alleged criminal financial activity in 2020 on grounds it was “disinformation,” to FD-1023 alleging Burisma-Biden bribes. He asks whether allegation was dismissed by being falsely labeled “disinformation.”

June 7, 2023: Following a series of correspondences and meetings in which the FBI refuses to turn over the FD-1023, or even acknowledge its existence, FBI relents in permitting Chairman Comer, Ranking Member Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) in camera reviews of redacted version of document. Reviewers can neither retain nor take notes on document. With FBI resisting calls to produce document to full committee, Chairman Comer releases resolution and report recommending FBI Director Wray be held in contempt of Congress.

The same day, Wolf proposes plea deal to Hunter Biden’s counsel including global immunity provision. The deal also includes a protective measure whereby Justice Department can only prosecute Hunter Biden for gun charge if he breaks deal – as determined by presiding judge, not DOJ, providing protection from a future Republican administration.

Also that day, Weiss responds on behalf of DOJ to Chairman Jordan’s May 25 letter to AG Garland. In response, Weiss says “I want to make clear that, as the Attorney General has stated, I have been granted ultimate authority over this matter [the Hunter Biden case], including responsibility for deciding where, when, and whether to file charges and for making decisions necessary to preserve the integrity of the prosecution.”

June 8, 2023: Special Counsel Jack Smith indicts Donald Trump in Mar-a-Lago classified documents case.

The same day, prosecutors send Hunter Biden plea agreement to presiding Delaware Judge Maryellen Noreika.

June 9, 2023: Former Attorney General Bill Barr says FD-1023 alleging Burisma-Biden bribes “was provided to the ongoing investigation in Delaware to follow up on and to check out” via the Pittsburgh U.S. Attorney’s Office, which served as a “clearinghouse” for evidence to be received and vetted in connection with the case.

June 12, 2023: Shapley submits affidavit to Congress indicating neither he, his team, nor the FBI agents working with it were ever provided the information contained in the FD-1023. In a June 19 letter, Ziegler will indicate the same.

June 13, 2023: Donald Trump is arraigned in the classified documents case, pleading not guilty.

Unbeknownst to the public, prosecutors had planned to file the Hunter Biden plea deal documents in Delaware federal court that day. They postpone.

June 20, 2023: Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office announces it has reached plea deal with Hunter Biden charging him with two misdemeanor tax offenses covering tax years 2017 and 2018, and entered into a pre-trial diversion agreement regarding a firearm charge. Absent from the charges are those stemming from Hunter’s Burisma work, or any charges relating to FARA.

Republicans pan the pact as a sweetheart plea deal illustrative of a two-tier justice system, with some indicating it violates DOJ standards. Hunter Biden’s attorney declares, “It is my understanding that the five-year investigation into Hunter is resolved.” Weiss’ office claims the investigation remains “ongoing,” according to the New York Times, at the time “taking Mr. Biden and officials at Justice Department headquarters by surprise.”

Around this time, the Times reports, Wolf’s role shrinks. Leo Wise, a senior prosecutor from the Baltimore U.S. attorney’s office, is detailed to Delaware. He will ultimately sign off on and defend the plea agreement in court.

June 22, 2023: House Ways and Means Committee releases transcripts of Shapley and Ziegler interviews.

Chairman Jordan sends oversight letter to Weiss reiterating prior request for material regarding DOJ’s alleged retaliation against Shapley, and inquiring about the “unusual nature” of Weiss’ June 7 response on behalf of AG Garland to Jordan’s May 25 oversight request.

June 28, 2023: Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Lindsey Graham (R-N.C.) sends letter to Weiss asking for information regarding, among other allegations, that he had requested and was denied special counsel authority.

June 29, 2023: Three House Committee chairmen send letter to Garland requesting that he make 11 Justice Department officials pivotal to the Hunter Biden case, including Weiss, Wolf, U.S. Attorney Graves, and U.S. Attorney Estrada, available for transcribed interviews.

June 30, 2023: Weiss responds to Jordan’s June 22 letter indicating DOJ did not retaliate against the IRS team, and that he stands by his June 7 letter indicating he has been granted total authority of the Hunter Biden case, including “where, when and whether to file charges.” Weiss adds, however, that “my charging authority is geographically limited to my home district [Delaware],” and that if another U.S. Attorney’s Office with venue for a case declines to partner on a case, he “may request Special Attorney Status from the Attorney General.” Weiss claims he has been “assured that, if necessary …” he “would be granted” such authority.

July 2023:
Burisma-Biden Bribes Document Released;
Whistleblowers Testify About Obstructed Case Publicly;
Hunter Biden’s Plea Deal Collapses in Court

July 9, 2023: Sen. Grassley sends letter to Weiss inquiring as to whether Wolf and others had investigated FD-1023 alleging Biden bribes.

July 10, 2023: Weiss responds to letter from Sen. Lindsey Graham indicating he had not requested special counsel authority with DOJ officials, but rather “had discussions with Departmental officials regarding … potential” special attorney authorities, which would have permitted him to charge in venues other than Delaware. “I was assured that I would be granted this authority if it proved necessary” prior to the Oct. 7, 2022, meeting, Weiss writes.

July 19, 2023: Shapley and Ziegler testify publicly before House Oversight Committee, recounting key claims expressed during their closed-door depositions regarding allegations of slow-walking, obfuscation, and obstruction in the Hunter Biden case.

The same day, Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office emails final deal to Judge Noreika.

July 20, 2023: Sen. Grassley releases FD-1023 alleging $5 million bribes from Zlochevsky to Joe and Hunter Biden in exchange for firing of Shokin, indicating Zlochevsky has text messages and recordings suggesting he was coerced into making such payments.

July 24, 2023: The Federalist reports that the Pittsburgh FBI office that had originally received the FD-1023 had corroborated multiple facts included in the document, and briefed the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office accordingly, per a source.

The same day, DOJ offers to make Weiss available for a public hearing before the House Judiciary Committee as soon as Sept. 27.

July 24, 2023: Buyers of Hunter Biden’s art, totaling $1.4 million in sales, are revealed to include Hunter financial backer Kevin Morris and California Democrat donor Elizabeth Hirsh Naftali. In July 2022, eight months after Hunter’s first art opening, President Biden announced Naftali was appointed to the Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad. It is not clear whether the sale occurred before or after the appointment. Reports also indicate Naftali visited the White House at least 13 times after December 2021.

July 26, 2023: Hunter Biden’s plea deal collapses under questioning from federal Judge Noreika, with prosecutors and Hunter Biden’s lawyers sparring over scope of immunity provision in pretrial diversion agreement. When asked if government could bring charges under FARA with plea agreement in place, prosecutors say “Yes.” Biden’s counsel disagrees. This ultimately leads Biden to withdraw his guilty plea. DOJ acknowledges aspects of the deal are unprecedented in terms of structure and substance.

Shortly after hearing, prosecutors and defense counsel will confer, with Biden’s lawyers suggesting changes to the deal.

July 27, 2023: Special Counsel Smith issues superseding indictment in Trump Mar-a-Lago classified documents case.

July 29, 2023: Chairman Comer issues oversight request letters to Naftali and the White House counsel in furtherance of probe of Hunter’s art sales. There is no indication federal investigators pursued the sales.

July 31, 2023: Former Hunter Biden business associate Devon Archer testifies before House Oversight Committee for transcribed interview. He alleges Hunter Biden’s business was selling the Biden “brand,” headlined by his father, and that he had witnessed Joe joining Hunter Biden and his business associates in person or by phone upwards of 20 times.

The same day, prosecutors reject Hunter Biden counsel’s proposed deal revisions and suggest their own.

Also that day, relevant House committee chairmen send letter to Garland inquiring about the “unusual plea and pretrial diversion agreements” offered Hunter Biden, in light of whistleblower allegations “the Department has provided preferential treatment toward Mr. Biden.”

Aug. 2023-Present:
Another Trump Indictment; Weiss Gets Special Counsel Authority He Wasn’t Supposed to Need; Biden Impeachment Inquiry Opens; Hunter Hit With Gun Indictment

Aug. 1, 2023: Special Counsel Smith indicts Donald Trump on charges pertaining to his contesting of the 2020 election and the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Aug. 7, 2023: Hunter Biden’s defense counsel rejects prosecutors’ proposed changes to the plea bargain, which according to an email Chris Clark sent to prosecutors, “without explanation, completely delet[ed] the immunity provision.”

Aug. 8, 2023: Weiss requests special counsel authority.

Aug. 9, 2023: House Oversight Committee releases bank records memo detailing millions in payments from foreign sources to Bidens and their associates from Russian, Ukrainian, and Kazakhstani individuals during Joe Biden’s vice presidency – individuals who Vice President Biden met.

Aug. 11, 2023: Garland names Weiss special counsel, asserting “he will continue to have the authority and responsibility that he has exercised previously to oversee the investigation and decide where, when, and whether to file charges.” Weiss retains his position as U.S. Attorney for Delaware despite rules calling for special counselors to come from “outside the United States government,” and for any special counsel to be “independent.” The New York Times later reports that Weiss was “motivated by a [special counsel] requirement to produce a report that would allow him to answer critics, according to people with knowledge of the situation – an accounting that could become public before the 2024 election.”

The same day, the Justice Department files motions to dismiss the Hunter Biden tax case so charges can be brought in proper venue – either the Central District of California, or Washington, D.C. – an authority Weiss will have as special counsel. Biden had waived any venue challenge enabling the original deal to be cut in Delaware, despite venue for the offenses lying elsewhere.

Aug. 14, 2023: Chairman Comer releases transcript of interview with FBI official corroborating Shapley’s testimony that FBI headquarters had tipped off Secret Service headquarters and President Biden’s transition team about investigators’ planned Dec. 8, 2020, Hunter Biden interview.

The same day, Fulton County (Georgia) District Attorney Fani Willis indicts Donald Trump and 18 others in RICO case regarding Trump’s contesting of the 2020 election.

Aug. 17, 2023: Hunter Biden tax case dismissed in Delaware.

Aug. 19, 2023: Politico and the New York Times publish detailed accounts on collapse of Biden plea agreement based in part on leaked correspondence between Weiss’ office and Hunter Biden’s lawyers.

Aug. 21, 2023: House committees subpoena IRS and FBI officials present at Oct. 7, 2022, meeting in which Weiss allegedly claimed he did not have final charging authority in Hunter Biden case.

Aug. 28, 2023: House Committee chairmen send oversight request letter to AG Garland regarding his decision to appoint Weiss special counsel.

The same day, The Federalist reports on emails obtained via FOIA indicating DOJ intervened on behalf of Weiss’ office on multiple occasions to respond to congressional inquiries – seen as further evidence of Weiss and DOJ officials in Washington seeking to align their stories on who had what authority in Hunter Biden case.

Sept. 6, 2023: Weiss’ office indicates intent to indict Hunter Biden on gun charges in Delaware before Sept. 29 in court filing.

That same day, House Committee chairmen send letter to Hunter Biden’s counsel calling for it to produce documents and communications previously leaked to Politico and the New York Times regarding negotiations surrounding the failed Hunter Biden plea agreement.

Sept. 12, 2023: Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) announces House will open impeachment inquiry into President Biden concerning allegations of abuse of power, obstruction, and corruption. “The American people deserve to know that public offices are not for sale and that the federal government is not being used to cover up the actions of a politically-connected family,” he writes.

House committees open joint inquiry into alleged attempts by Hunter Biden legal team to encourage DOJ to retaliate against IRS whistleblowers Shapley and Ziegler.

Also that day, Washington Post publishes report based on leaked transcript from House Judiciary Committee interview with Baltimore FBI special agent in charge Thomas Sobocinski challenging IRS whistleblowers’ claims about what Weiss said about his authority during Oct. 7, 2022, meeting.

Sept. 13, 2023: Shapley’s lawyers respond with the IRS agents’ contemporaneous handwritten notes to rebut Sobocinski’s claims.

Sept. 14, 2023: Weiss indicts Hunter Biden on felony gun charges in Delaware federal court.

Sept. 18, 2023: Hunter Biden sues the IRS over Shapley and Ziegler’s whistleblower disclosures.

Sept. 20, 2023: AG Garland testifies before the House Judiciary Committee. Under questioning from Chairman Jordan, he defends prior comments about Weiss’ authority, stating “no one had the authority to turn him [Weiss] down” in terms of bringing charges, but that “they could refuse to partner with him.” Garland says the two are “not the same under well-known Justice Department practices.” He will also testifies that a U.S. Attorney in one district “does not have the authority to deny another U.S. attorney the ability to go forward” with a case.

Sept. 26, 2023: Hunter Biden makes initial appearance in Delaware federal court in gun charge case, and is arraigned.

On the same day. Hunter sues Rudy Giuliani and attorney Robert Costello over sharing of Hunter’s laptop data in alleged violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.

Also that day, House Oversight Committee reveals that Hunter Biden received two wire payments totaling over $250,000 during 2019 from Chinese sources, at least one of which was linked to the Chinese investment concern BHR Partners, including its CEO. Hunter’s attorney George Mesires would state that same year that the president’s son had served as a board member at the company in an “unpaid position.” While Hunter Biden was listed as the beneficiary for the funds, the Delaware home of Joe Biden was listed as the beneficiary address.

Sept. 28, 2023: House Oversight Committee to hold first impeachment inquiry hearing.

Syndicated with permission from RealClearWire.

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