Running out of money to pay his legal bills, Hunter Biden goes on the offense
Hunter Biden's lawyers took a new tack yesterday, hot on the heels of news that his artwork isn't selling very well and that he may be planning to raise money for a legal defense fund (would the donors' names be public?). In the process, for the first time, the First Son admitted that at least some of the reported content of his laptop is genuine. Graham Kates of CBS News obtained copies of letters Hunter Biden's legal team, headed by new (since late December) renowned defense lawyer Abbe Lowell, has sent signaling a new, aggressive strategy.
Hunter Biden's legal team went on the offensive Wednesday, demanding state and federal investigations into the dissemination of his personal material — purported to be from his laptop — and threatening a defamation lawsuit against Fox News' Tucker Carlson for allegedly failing to correct false statements.
The flurry of letters to the Delaware attorney general, the Department of Justice, the IRS and attorneys for Fox News and Carlson represent an aggressive new strategy for the president's son, who is facing long-running federal criminal investigations, as well as new probes promised by congressional Republicans, according to a source familiar with Biden's approach.
"This marks a new approach by Hunter Biden and his team," the source told CBS News. "He is not going to sit quietly by as questionable characters continue to violate his rights and media organizations peddling in lies try to defame him."
On the one hand, Team Hunter wants federal and state officials to do the work of attacking his tormentors. They are under no legal obligation to do so. On the other hand, he is threatening defamation suits.
Via the U.K. Daily Mail:
'This failed dirty political trick directly resulted in the exposure, exploitation and manipulation of Mr. Biden's private and personal information,' the letter said. 'Politicians and the news media have used this unlawfully accessed, copied, distributed, and manipulated data to distort the truth and cause harm to Mr. Biden.'
The letter is the first time Hunter Biden has acknowledged it was his data that was found and distributed to members of the news media. (snip)
The letter to the Justice Department was addressed to its top national security official, Matthew Olsen.
It cites possible violations of statutes prohibiting the unauthorized access of a computer or stored electronic communication as well as the transport of stolen data across state lines and the publication of restricted personal data with the intent to intimidate or threaten.
The letter to Tucker Carlson focuses on him allegedly implying that Hunter was part of a money-laundering scheme, and specifically on reporting about a rent application from Hunter that misstated the rent he claimed to have been paying in Delaware to his father, which was later discovered to be the rent at Sweden House in D.C. for a luxurious office.
If such a lawsuit is filed, it opens up Hunter Biden's financial records for discovery, and so could be a two-edged sword.
So far, there has been no response from the DoJ or Delaware about the request for investigations. Lurking in the background is the House of Representatives' investigatory power to call such officials in to testify on their reactions if they launch such probes.
Tucker Carlson's show tonight could be quite interesting if he responds.
Caricature by Donkey Hotey, CC BY 2.0 license.