Hunter Biden, the son of President Joe Biden, faces new legal challenges as he was indicted on Thursday on nine tax charges in California. The charges, comprising three felonies and six misdemeanors, are in addition to federal firearms charges in Delaware.
The indictment alleges that Hunter Biden owed at least $1.4 million in taxes between 2016 and 2019. Despite paying the back taxes, the indictment could result in a maximum prison sentence of 17 years if he is convicted.
The charges come after the collapse of a summer plea deal. Defense attorney Abbe Lowell accused special counsel David Weiss of succumbing to political pressure, while the White House declined to comment. The indictment adds complexity to ongoing congressional Republicans' impeachment inquiries into President Biden and the Biden family's business dealings. The House is expected to vote on authorizing the inquiry next week.
The new charges against Hunter Biden include filing a false return and tax evasion felonies, as well as misdemeanor failure to file and failure to pay. The defense plans to contest the charges, potentially invoking immunity provisions from the original plea deal, though prosecutors argue these are invalid.
Additionally, the defense plans to seek dismissal of the gun charges, calling them "unprecedented and unconstitutional." The federal gun charges in Delaware allege that Hunter Biden lied about his drug use to purchase a gun in 2018. The indictment adds further legal complexity to the Biden family as President Biden faces Republican-led impeachment inquiries and allegations of influence-peddling. The separate, long-running criminal investigation into Hunter Biden had been expected to conclude with a plea deal.
[Sourced from AP News]