Takeaways: What the spectacle of the collapse of Hunter’s plea deal showed us
The drama that unfolded at the Wilmington, Delaware Federal Courthouse yesterday, where courageous Judge Maryellen Noreika rejected the plea deal purportedly agreed to by Hunter Biden and Delaware US Attorney David Weiss’s prosecutors, has taught the nation several important lessons.
First of all, for Americans dependent on the bigfoot media, it was probably news that Hunter Biden, the president’s son, faces any serious legal jeopardy for serious crimes. The corporate media blackout is over, as Newsbusters reported:
All three networks ABC’s World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, and NBC Nightly News kicked off their newscasts with the Hunter news. On ABC, justice correspondent Terry Moran fretted that “Hunter Biden came to the federal courthouse in Wilmington this morning expecting to put his legal troubles behind him, but it was a day of unexpected courtroom drama and an unforeseen twist.”
Of course, there was spin aplenty, of the boo-hoo Joe just loves his son variety, of the Republicans pounce school of journalism, and naturally, Trump appointed the prosecutor and the judge, for the vast majority who do not understand that Delware’s two Democrat senators had de facto veto power over such presidential appointments.
Nonetheless, with wall-to-wall cable news coverage as the drama unfolded and subsequent evening news and morning show spots, the public now is aware that something is rotten in the state of Delaware as far as the POTUS’s son is concerned.
Second, the official Biden narrative (repeated by hapless Karine Jean-Pierre at yesterday’s press briefing) that Hunter is just a “private citizen” was blown to smithereens by the six-car convoy that delivered Hunter Biden to the courthouse:
Remember, Hunter Biden is a "private citizen" ... who keeps appointments in a six-car, taxpayer-funded motorcade, and his criminal enterprise has nothing to do with his corrupt father whose name he used to extort shakedown payments from foreign oligarchs. https://t.co/5R14rk4qp7— Cruadin (@cruadin) July 26, 2023
Third, the rejection of the deal obviously implies that the Department of Justice wasn’t doing its job and is corrupt. It was beyond a mere “sweetheart deal,” as Iowahawk tweeted. “I wouldn't call it a sweetheart deal, it was more of a lap dance stripper deal.”
The horrifying details of the misconduct confirm corruption. Former deputy special counsel Sol Wisenberg tweeted:
Some thoughts: Now we know why DOJ didn’t show us the plea agreement terms. What didn't they want us to know ahead of time? A) a global immunity deal for Hunter; B) A binding plea (that is, the judge must accept the specific terms if she accepts the agreement); C) Misdemeanor probation; D) Other unusual plea terms. 1. A global immunity deal for Hunter while the overall investigation is “ongoing”, is stunning—a super-sweetheart deal. 2. A binding plea is extremely unusual in the vast majority of federal jurisdictions. It means for example, that if the agreement calls for probation the judge must give Hunter probation. It is binding. 3. That the prosecution and defense would disagree about the terms of the agreement in open court is a joke. Ambiguous terms in a plea agreements are got the law chanbgeconstrued against the government! There should be no room for disagreement on the key terms of the agreement. So, this was either astounding incompetence or corruption on DOJ’s part. I think it is corruption. This looks like a wink and a nod deal (as @shipwreckedcrew has noted) where DOJ would have plausible deniability if the judge asked no questions and accepted the deal. The scope of immunity is the most important feature of a plea deal. It is inconceivable that the prosecutors were incompetent here. Leo Wise has an excellent reputation for competence. 4. Think about this. DOJ was about to sanction a plea deal where Hunter would get misdemeanor probation on serious tax charges plus pretrial diversion (no time served or criminal record) on the felony gun charge. Hunter would also get complete immunity on all other charges. And he would not have to cooperate with the government’s ongoing investigation. Totally disgraceful. Merrick Garland and David Weiss should be ashamed. And where is Lisa Monaco? Why hasn't she been called to testify? [emphasis in original]
Former federal prosecutor (and candidate for Missouri attorney general) Will Scharf explained how the feds colluded with the defense to try to hide the fact that they were giving Hunter a “Get out of Jail Free” card in return for nothing.
… Hunter's plea was structured under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(c)(1)(B), which is usually just a plea in return for a joint sentencing recommendation only, and contained no information on its face about other potential charges, and contained no clear agreement by DOJ to forego prosecution of other charges. Instead, DOJ and Hunter's lawyers effectively hid that part of the agreement in what was publicly described as a pretrial diversion agreement relating to a § 922(g)(3) gun charge against Hunter for being a drug user in possession of a firearm. That pretrial diversion agreement as written was actually MUCH broader than just the gun charge. If Hunter were to complete probation, the pretrial diversion agreement prevented DOJ from ever bringing charges against Hunter for any crimes relating to the offense conduct discussed in the plea agreement, which was purposely written to include his foreign influence peddling operations in China and elsewhere. So they put the facts in the plea agreement, but put their non-prosecution agreement in the pretrial diversion agreement, effectively hiding the full scope of what DOJ was offering and Hunter was obtaining through these proceedings. Hunter's upside from this deal was vast immunity from further prosecution if he finished a couple years of probation, and the public wouldn't be any the wiser because none of this was clearly stated on the face of the plea agreement, as would normally be the case. Judge Noreika smelled a rat. She understood that the lawyers were trying to paint her into a corner and hide the ball. Instead, she backed DOJ and Hunter's lawyers into a corner by pulling all the details out into the open and then indicating that she wasn't going to approve a deal as broad as what she had discovered. DOJ, attempting to save face and save its case, then stated on the record that the investigation into Hunter was ongoing and that Hunter remained susceptible to prosecution under FARA. Hunter's lawyers exploded. They clearly believed that FARA was covered under the deal, because as written, the pretrial diversion agreement language was broad enough to cover it. They blew up the deal, Hunter pled not guilty, and that's the current state of play.
Fourth, the plea deal, if accepted by the judge, would have tied her hands, as former federal prosecutor Shipwreckedcrew tweeted:
This confirms that the written plea offer is an 11(c)(1)(C) plea. That means the Court would have to agree to the sentence that the parties stipulated in the agreement -- Probation -- no matter what the facts might be as determined by the Presentence Report. I could have predicted that would have been DOA. I don't think any federal judge would say "Yes, I'll agree to allow you to lock me into giving only probation and nothing more when I don't know anything about the facts." What a bunch of idiots.
Fifth, the corporate media now has a much harder time pretending that nothing is amiss. Everybody loves a mystery story, and now that the public knows something is up with Hunter Biden that doesn’t pass the smell test, they want to know exactly what that is. The scheduled closed door testimony of former Hunter business partner Devon Archer is expected to reveal under oath his previous statements that Joe Biden listened in to business meetings with Hunter’s dodgy foreign clients via speakerphone many times.
The Democrats now know that the dam has broken on the news of the shady business dealings of the Biden crime family’s influence peddling operation that kicked into high gear as he was leaving the vice presidency and anticipated that he could set up himself and his family for life, never expecting that he would be pulled back from obscurity when the Democrats’ puppet masters needed someone to knock sure-loser Bernie Sanders out of the nomination in 2020.
Yesterday’s events in Wilmington set the stage for the next act in a national drama with the future of the Republic at stake.
Photo credit: twitter video screengrab