Justice Department investigators were ‘trying to limit’ questioning related to President Biden as part of the investigation into Hunter Biden, despite objections from FBI and IRS officials, a whistleblower alleged.
The House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday released testimony from two IRS whistleblowers who said officials at the Justice Department, FBI and IRS interfered with the investigation of the tax evasion case against Hunter Biden. The whistleblowers said decisions in the case seemed to be ‘influenced by politics.’
One whistleblower, Gary Shapley Jr., who was the supervisor of the investigation at the IRS, said that ‘at every stage’ of the probe, decisions were made that ‘had the effect of benefiting the subject of the investigation.’ He cited several examples involving apparent references to Hunter Biden’s father.
Shapley pointed to text messages and emails obtained from Hunter Biden’s former business partner Tony Bobulinski, which Fox News Digital first reported before the 2020 presidential election and before it was known that Hunter was under federal investigation.
In December 2020, Shapley said investigators were preparing to interview Biden business associate Rob Walker.
‘Among other things, we wanted to question Walker about an email that said: ‘Ten held by H for the big guy,’’ Shapley said. ‘We had obvious questions like who was H, who the big guy was, and why this percentage was to be held separately with the association hidden.’
But Shapley said Assistant U.S. Attorney Lesley Wolf ‘interjected and said she did not want to ask about the big guy and stated she did not want to ask questions about ‘dad.’’
It has been reported that Joe Biden is referred to as ‘the big guy.’
‘When multiple people in the room spoke up and objected that we had to ask, she responded, there’s no specific criminality to that line of questioning,’ Shapley said. ‘This upset the FBI, too.’
Shapley said that ‘basically everyone in the room except for the prosecutors had a big problem with’ not asking questions about President Biden.
The ‘Ten held by H for the big guy’ message is an email from May 13, 2017, which included a discussion of ‘remuneration packages’ for six people in a business deal with a Chinese energy firm. The email appeared to identify Biden as ‘Chair / Vice Chair depending on agreement with CEFC,’ in an apparent reference to now-bankrupt CEFC China Energy Co.
The email includes a note that ‘Hunter has some office expectations he will elaborate.’ A proposed equity split references ’20’ for ‘H’ and ’10 held by H for the big guy?’ with no further details.
Shapley said that on Oct. 22, 2020, the team and Wolf stated that U.S. Attorney David Weiss had ‘reviewed the affidavit for search warrant of Hunter Biden’s residence and agreed that probable cause had been achieved.’
‘Even though the legal requirements were met, and the investigative team knew evidence would be in these locations, AUSA Wolf stated that they would not allow a physical search warrant on Hunter Biden,’ Shapley said.
Shapley said IRS and FBI agents conducting the Walker interview ‘tried to skirt AUSA Wolf’s direction’ to avoid questions on ‘dad’ and ‘the big guy.’
‘And they were like, ‘How can we not ask?’ Like, that was wrong. We got to ask. We got to ask,’ Shapley said. ‘And so they basically decided that they would ask the question without saying the words ‘big guy,’ and that then they would somehow be doing what they were asked to do.’
Shapley repeatedly testified that there were ‘multiple times where Lesley Wolf said that she didn’t want to ask questions about dad.’
‘And dad was kind of how we referred to him,’ Shapley said. ‘We referred to Hunter Biden’s father, you know, as dad.’
Shapley said Joe Biden was referred to in that way ‘so that we could speak more openly without yelling, ‘President Biden.’’
He also discussed an instance in December 2020 when Hunter Biden vacated the Washington, D.C., office of his Owasco firm and put all of his documents into a storage unit in northern Virginia.
‘The IRS prepared an affidavit in support of a search warrant for the unit, but AUSA Wolf once again objected,’ Shapley said.
According to Shapley, Weiss was leading the investigation into Hunter Biden and agreed that if the storage unit wasn’t accessed for 30 days, ‘we could execute a search warrant on it.’
‘No sooner had we gotten off the call then we heard AUSA Wolf had simply reached out to Hunter Biden’s defense counsel and told him about the storage unit, once again ruining our chances to get evidence before being destroyed, manipulated, or concealed,’ Shapley said.
He also said a message in which Hunter Biden refers to his father in a message to Chinese energy company CEFC executive Henry Zhao made it clear a search of the guesthouse at the Bidens’ Delaware home was needed. But he said Wolf said that the ‘optics were a driving factor in the decision on whether to execute a search warrant.’
These revelations come just days after the Justice Department announced that Hunter Biden will plead guilty to two misdemeanor counts of willful failure to pay federal income tax as part of a deal that is expected to keep him out of prison. The president’s son also agreed to enter into a pretrial diversion agreement with regard to a separate charge of possession of a firearm by a person who is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance.
In response to the whistleblower allegations, the Justice Department said in a statement: ‘As both the Attorney General and U.S. Attorney David Weiss have said, U.S. Attorney Weiss has full authority over this matter, including responsibility for deciding where, when, and whether to file charges as he deems appropriate. He needs no further approval to do so. Questions about his investigation should be directed to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Delaware.’
The White House has repeatedly said President Biden has never been involved in his son’s business dealings. They also maintain the president never discussed them with him.