The federal investigation of Hunter Biden has yet to yield an indictment — prompting questions from some legal experts about what’s taking so long to reach an outcome following this week’s revelation of a 2018 voicemail from Joe Biden to his scandal-scarred son.
At least two witnesses testified in February before a federal grand jury in Biden’s home state of Delaware, including a former girlfriend who detailed Hunter Biden’s lavish spending and was asked about the source of his income, The Post exclusively reported at the time.
In April, The Post exclusively reported that a grand jury witness was asked to identify the “big guy” referenced in a March 2017 email detailing the first son’s planned deal with a Chinese energy conglomerate. Former Hunter Biden business partner Tony Bobulinski — who was part of the planned deal — has maintained “the big guy” phrase refers to Joe Biden.
But nothing has emerged from the proceedings in recent weeks, leaving veteran prosecutors to wonder what’s going on.
“It is very unusual, if witnesses have already testified, for the prosecutor to not immediately submit the matter for a vote,” former Utah US Attorney Brett Tolman said.
“The fact that Hunter Biden has not been indicted yet can only be explained by purposeful delay by [the Department of Justice].”
In December 2020, about a month after his father was elected president, Hunter Biden publicly disclosed that federal prosecutors in Delaware were “investigating my tax affairs.”
He denied any wrongdoing at the time, saying, “I am confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately.”
Reports have indicated the probe began in 2018 and expanded to include potential money laundering and violations of lobbying laws by Hunter Biden.
“When Hunter’s attorneys mentioned that he has a ‘tax problem,’ that struck me as very optimistic on their behalf and it also shows negotiations had been going on between his defense attorneys and the prosecution,” said Jim Trusty, a former Justice Department prosecutor.
Trusty added: “With the sluggishness of any apparent prosecution and the damning nature of the ‘laptop from hell,’ as well as likely testimony from some of Hunter’s colleagues, it makes you wonder if Delaware is the best place for investigating the Bidens.”
In addition to the testimony that’s surfaced, a lawyer for Hunter Biden’s crooked former business partner, Devon Archer, exclusively told The Post in January: “Mr. Archer has cooperated completely with the Delaware US Attorney’s Office investigation from the moment he became aware of it.”
A possible explanation for the apparent lack of progress in the probe is a series of Justice Department memos in which several attorneys general warn about “election year sensitivities” related to investigations and prosecutions.
Those guidelines were notably disregarded in 2016 by then-FBI Director James Comey when he repeatedly divulged information about a probe into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server when she was secretary of state — before ultimately declining to bring charges against the Democratic presidential nominee.
But Trusty said the memos don’t “explain years of delay in any investigation, much less one as important as determining whether the Biden family engaged in a ‘pay to play’ scheme.”
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley also said that while it’s “very hard to gauge” what’s going on with the grand jury, “there is no set time period under the policy to avoid ‘overt investigative steps’ before an election.”
“This is still a little early to suspend public moves,” he said. “It is usually discussed in terms of 60 or 90 days [before Election Day]. Moreover, Biden is not on the ballot.”
The Delaware US Attorney’s Office declined to comment on Wednesday and the Justice Department did not return requests for comment. Attorneys for Hunter Biden also did not return requests for comment.
In April, Attorney General Merrick Garland declined to answer questions about the Hunter Biden probe during testimony before the Senate Appropriations Committee.
But the AG claimed a special prosecutor wasn’t needed because he was “committed to the independence of the Justice Department from any influence from the White House in criminal matters” and because “the president is committed not to interfere, not only in that investigation, but any other kind of investigation.”