The judge presiding over the president’s son guilty plea isn’t ready to accept it just yet
Hunter Biden is in federal court on Wednesday to plead guilty to two misdemeanor charges related to failing to pay his taxes on time. The plea deal is in danger of falling apart, though, as the judge overseeing the case has refused to sign off on it while urging prosecutors and Biden’s legal team to iron out its terms.
Biden last month struck a deal to plead guilty to two counts of “willful failure to pay federal income tax.” He also agreed to admit to the facts of a separate charge of “possession of a firearm by a person who is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance.”
U.S. District Court Judge Maryellen Noreika is now questioning whether the deal would preclude the Justice Department from charging Biden with other crimes, including those related to his foreign dealings. The government said it wouldn’t, to which Biden’s lead lawyer declared the agreement “null and void,” according to The New York Times. The two sides are now working on a compromise.
Noreika’s refusal to sign off on the deal isn’t the first sign of trouble in the case. Noreika on Tuesday accused a member of Biden’s defense team of misrepresenting herself to the court. The judge claimed in an order that the lawyer painted herself as an employee of a Republican attorney in an effort to convince the court clerk to remove documents containing Biden’s personal tax information, according to Politico. The law firm representing Biden said chalked it up to an “unfortunate and unintentional miscommunication”
Donald Trump and congressional Republicans — who have been desperately trying to dredge up proof that Biden and his father were involved in a bribery scheme — have been furious over the deal. They have alleged the Justice Department is letting Hunter off easy as part of an effort to bury the family’s corruption, despite the fact that the U.S. attorney who offered the deal was appointed by Trump. Conservative media has also been obsessed with the issue. Independent journalist Aaron Rupar noted on Twitter that Fox News and Fox Business combined to mention Hunter Biden’s name over 100 times before 10 a.m. on Wednesday.
Source link: https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/hunter-biden-plea-deal-falling-apart-1234795444/