Jun 21, 2023

Hunter Biden Strikes Plea Deal With DOJ Transcript

Hunter Biden Strikes Plea Deal With DOJ Transcript
RevBlogTranscriptsDepartment of JusticeHunter Biden Strikes Plea Deal With DOJ Transcript

Hunter Biden, the son of President Joe Biden, has agreed to plead guilty to a pair of tax-related misdemeanors. Read the transcript here.

Transcribe Your Own Content

Try Rev and save time transcribing, captioning, and subtitling.

Speaker 1 (00:00):

Have you spoken to your son today, Mr President?

Mr President Biden (00:03):

I’m very proud of my son.

Speaker 2 (00:04):

After a five-year investigation, the Justice Department today cutting a deal with Hunter Biden, the son of the President of the United States. Hunter Biden agreeing to plead guilty to two misdemeanor counts of tax violations and acknowledging that he illegally possessed a gun while he was addicted to a controlled substance. The deal which will allow Biden to avoid prison time, if approved by a federal judge, reflects a sober reality, Hunter Biden committed crimes. Until this plea, he had maintained his innocence.

Hunter Biden (00:36):

I am absolutely certain, 100% certain that at the end of the investigation that I will be cleared.

Speaker 2 (00:43):

But today a different tune. His attorney saying Biden believes it is important to take responsibility for these mistakes he made during a period of turmoil and addiction in his life. The plea agreement outlines the two misdemeanors citing that he failed to pay more than $200,000 in taxes over two years in 2017 and 2018. He would also avoid prosecution on another charge, considered a felony, admitting that he illegally possessed a firearm, a Colt Cobra 38 Special, in 2018 while he was still an addict.

Dan Abrams (01:16):

If he doesn’t violate the terms of probation and doesn’t violate the terms of the diversion agreement, then he would not serve time behind bars.

Speaker 2 (01:26):

Republicans swiftly hitting back. From house speaker Kevin McCarthy.

Kevin McCarthy (01:30):

If you were the President’s leading political opponent, the DOJ tries to literally put you in jail and give you prison tense. If you are the President’s son, you get a sweetheart deal.

Speaker 2 (01:41):

To presidential candidate Ron DeSantis tweeting. “If Hunter was not connected to the elite DC class, he would’ve been put in jail a long time ago.” And former President Trump himself facing a federal trial claiming that the case against Hunter Biden was whitewashed, calling it a mere traffic ticket saying the system is broken.

Dan Abrams (02:00):

Yes, this is a slap on the wrist, but it’s probably a harder slap than an ordinary person would get if their name wasn’t Hunter Biden.

Speaker 2 (02:08):

The man in charge of the investigation, US Attorney David Weiss, was appointed by former President Donald Trump and kept on by Attorney General Merrick Garland to show he would not meddle in the case.

Merrick Garland (02:19):

There will not be interference of any political or improper kind.

Speaker 2 (02:24):

Weiss recently said in a letter to Congress, he was “Granted ultimate authority over this matter, including the responsibility for deciding where, when, and whether to file charges.” His long and wide-ranging investigation examined various parts of Hunter Biden’s life, including his business dealings in Ukraine and China.

Rick Klein (02:43):

You’re going to see a combination of a victory lap and a rallying cry from conservatives, from some of the Republican presidential candidates up to including Donald Trump saying that, look, we knew there was something there, but this is not the end of it.

Speaker 2 (02:55):

While this could conclude DOJs investigation, congressional Republicans are still pursuing their own investigation into nearly every facet of Hunter Biden’s business dealings, including examining foreign payments.

Rick Klein (03:08):

The whole cloud of stuff around his son, his laptop, his drug addiction. Now his admitted tax evasion, as well as his business dealings. They all represent something that is core to the Biden image and that is potentially vulnerable politically.

Speaker 2 (03:24):

Today, President Biden standing behind his son releasing a statement through a White House spokesperson saying that, “The President and First Lady love their son and support him as he continues to rebuild his life.” This is not the first time that Hunter has been the center of a political and legal firestorm. In 2020, Trump accused him of profiting from business interests in Ukraine during the time when his father was vice president.

Donald Trump (03:49):

The newly uncovered emails revealed that a top executive from the highly questionable Ukrainian company, it’s an energy company, which paid Hunter at least $50,000 a month.

Rick Klein (04:01):

He was alleging essentially that Hunter Biden was leveraging his relationship with his father as Vice President to score lucrative contracts, consulting contracts with companies that had interests before foreign governments, particularly the Ukrainian government.

Speaker 2 (04:15):

But in 2019, Hunter Biden defended how he got his position on the Board of Charisma.

Hunter Biden (04:22):

Bottom line is that I know that I was completely qualified to be on the board, and that’s all that I focused on, was basically turning an Eastern European independent natural gas company into an Western standards of corporate governance. Did I make a mistake? Well, maybe in the grand scheme of things, yes. But did I make a mistake based upon some ethical lapse? Absolutely not.

Speaker 2 (04:48):

Today, an attorney for Hunter Biden, Christopher Clark spoke to MSNBC.

Speaker 3 (04:53):

How does Hunter Biden feel?

Christopher Clark (04:55):

I think Hunter feels happy to move on with his life and his recovery and keep doing… The one thing nobody talks about is how long Hunter has been sober moving forward with his life being a good person.

Dan Abrams (05:10):

His lawyers would say, this is it. This is the end. It’s all behind it. But congressional Republicans are making it clear that they don’t view it that way.

Speaker 4 (05:23):

And joining me now, former Trump Administration, Justice Department Official, Sarah Isgur. You know, Sarah, some Republicans are calling this plea a sweetheart deal. What’s your take?

Sarah Isgur (05:35):

Well, at the top level what Republicans are arguing is that you have Donald Trump facing 37 felony charges that all carry jail time compared to Hunter Biden who will now have no jail time. Hunter Biden was negotiating with the Department of Justice. Donald Trump has shown no interest in meeting with the Department of Justice to talk to them about a potential plea negotiation or deal. And the other part of the Hunter Biden news that we learned today is a tax evasion misdemeanor charges that he got probation for. That feels very normal. On the gun charge, that pretrial deferment. But for a first time offender, not too surprising from the Department of Justice.

Speaker 4 (06:15):

You mentioned that his plea includes that pretrial diversion program. You worked at the DOJ. Tell us what exactly that means and how does it help keep people accountable?

Sarah Isgur (06:25):

This actually is like probation, but probation only happens after you’ve pled guilty. So this still will have community service or payments. If you fulfill all of those, though, your charges are dismissed. So it does not stay on your record. For instance, that you are a felon, which I’m sure was very important to Hunter Biden’s legal team.

Speaker 4 (06:44):

Now, the US attorney in charge of this investigation we know was appointed by then President Donald Trump, and also looked into Hunter Biden’s business dealings in Ukraine and China. Could he still be the subject of other investigations?

Sarah Isgur (07:00):

So first of all, the House which is controlled by Republicans, absolutely is going to continue investigating Hunter Biden’s business dealings, but they’re not the executive branch. They can’t bring criminal charges. But you also saw that US attorneys say that that part of the investigation wasn’t closed. It’s interesting because the Hunter Biden legal team says that very much this means that all investigations into Hunter Biden are closed by the Department of Justice. Clearly a sticking point yet to be totally resolved by both parties here.

Speaker 4 (07:31):

As we say in television. Stay tuned. Sarah Isgur, thank you so much for your insights. Appreciate it.

Sarah Isgur (07:37):

Thank you.

Transcribe Your Own Content

Try Rev and save time transcribing, captioning, and subtitling.