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Special Counsel Weiss says Hunter Biden’s plea deal is not in effect, despite first son's claims

 August 16, 2023

Special Counsel David Weiss has strongly dismissed allegations that his office withdrew from an arranged plea bargain with Hunter Biden, the president's son, to resolve federal tax and firearms violations.

In a document filed on Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, Weiss refuted claims made by Hunter Biden's legal representatives, Fox News reported.

Weiss Refutes Claims of Binding Plea Agreement

In a motion filed over the weekend, Biden's lawyers contended that "the parties have a valid and binding bilateral Diversion Agreement."

Weiss retaliated by stating, "First, the Government did not 'renege' on the 'previously agreed-upon Plea Agreement,' as the Defendant inaccurately asserts."

He emphasized that Biden chose to plead not guilty at the hearing on July 26, 2023, and that U.S. Probation declined to approve the proposed diversion agreement. Consequently, Weiss argued, no agreement came into force.

Details of Negotiations and Counterproposals

According to Weiss, after the hearing on July 26, the two proposed agreements were merely drafts subject to change, and both parties did propose changes following the hearing.

He recounted that the defense counsel asked to meet with the government later that day and subsequently proposed changes to both documents.

The government considered these suggestions but did not find them to be in the best interest of the United States. Thus, the government offered counterproposals on July 31, 2023, which Hunter Biden rejected on August 7, 2023.

With the negotiations reaching a stalemate, Weiss explained, the government formally withdrew its most recent proposals in writing on August 9, 2023. This withdrawal led to the government's request to the Court to cancel its briefing order and move to dismiss the criminal tax information.

Collapse of Plea Deal and Current Situation

The proposed plea deal fell apart last month when Judge Maryellen Noreika questioned the felony tax charge in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware. While the deal was to see Biden plead guilty to two misdemeanor tax offenses, the felony gun charge would have been dropped if he complied with the court's directives for a specific time.

Noreika, however, described the DOJ's agreement as unconstitutional, "not standard," and deviating from the norm.

Weiss clarified that the chief U.S. probation officer did not approve the now-withdrawn diversion agreement; therefore, it never became binding. Now, the judge must determine whether she concurs with the government's position that the gun charge diversion agreement is invalid or sides with Hunter Biden's attorneys.

During his first court appearance, questions were raised regarding the investigation into Hunter Biden and the potential for future charges.

Prosecutors confirmed he was under investigation but did not disclose the reasons. They also stated that a guilty plea to the two misdemeanor tax offenses would not protect him from subsequent charges.

In a related development, the Justice Department submitted a filing on Friday requesting to dismiss the case in Delaware.

They noted that "the Defendant did not plead guilty and therefore did not waive venue" and emphasized that a trial is now necessary due to the impasse in negotiations. However, the trial cannot be held in the current district, as the venue does not lie there.

On Friday, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland designated David Weiss, the U.S. attorney for Delaware, to act as special counsel. This appointment grants Weiss the authority to oversee the investigation into Hunter Biden, along with any other connected matters that have arisen or may arise in the future, relating to this inquiry.