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FBI agent says prosecutors thwarted Hunter Biden charges, corroborating IRS whistleblowers

Prosecutor efforts slowing probe also captured in emails, testimony transcript shows

Published: September 24, 2023 11:19pm

Updated: September 25, 2023 7:59am

An FBI supervisor has corroborated key aspects of two IRS whistleblowers’ testimony alleging that federal prosecutors slow-walked Hunter Biden’s criminal probe and declined last year to bring tax charges in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., according to an interview transcript reviewed by Just the News.

The female FBI supervisor, whose name the Justice Department asked be kept private in the transcript, was interviewed recently by the House Judiciary Committee, and she chronicled her interactions with IRS agents Gary Shapley and Joseph Ziegler and Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss, the lead prosecutor in the Hunter Biden probe.

While the agent said she had different recollections than her IRS colleagues about certain aspects of the case and did not believe politics caused any delays, she confirmed there were instances in which prosecutors slowed the investigation.

Specifically, she confirmed agents were concerned that the DOJ tried to use the 2022 midterm elections to delay action in the Hunter Biden case even though his father was not up for election last year.

“I know that that had come up,” said the FBI agent, who worked in the Baltimore office that supervised cases in Delaware.

“Delays related to the election?” she was asked. 

“Yes, I noted that had come up” the agent answered.

The FBI generally has a rule that public actions not be taken in cases in the weeks before an election that could impact the outcome of the election, a rule that was not followed in 2016 when the bureau opened the Russia collusion probe against Donald Trump a few weeks before Election Day.

Republicans have argued there was no reason to avoid action in Hunter Biden’s case in 2022 because Joe Biden wasn’t on the ballot during the midterm election.

The agent also confirmed that the offices of the Joe Biden-appointed U.S. attorneys in Washington, Matthew Graves, and Los Angeles, Miguel Estrada, declined to bring criminal tax charges against Hunter Biden last year like Weiss sought.

“Do you remember that Mr. Estrada also decided not to bring the case?” the agent was asked.

“Yes,” she answered.

“OK. So he decided not to partner or he rejected the case, whatever the term is?” she was pressed. 

“I understand that, yes, that a decision had been made that the Central District of California wasn't going to, I guess – my understanding is that they weren't going to bring the case on their own,” she answered.

Likewise, she said, she had learned at some point that Graves’ office in Washington also declined to bring the charges wanted by Weiss against Hunter Biden.

“Do you remember learning that the U.S. attorney for D.C. decided not to partner with Mr. Weiss on bringing the tax charges for 2014 and 2015?” she was asked.

“I remember learning at some point in the investigation that Mr. Weiss would have to go through his other processes because the U.S. Attorney's Offices had, I guess, in that sense, using that terminology, wasn't going to partner,” she answered.

The interview transcript also revealed that House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan’s investigators have ascertained that some of the prosecutors’ efforts to block investigative steps are captured in contemporaneous emails between Shapley and Assistant U.S. Attorney Leslie Wolf in Delaware.

“In September of 2021, are you aware that Lesley Wolf emailed Gary Shapley stating, ‘I do not think you are going to be able to do these interviews as planned,'" adding that they would require approval from DOJ Tax Division  "Are you aware of that?” the FBI agent was asked at one point.

At another point, the FBI agent was asked: "Are you aware in October of 2021 Lesley Wolf emailed Gary Shapley and the investigative team that 'It will get us into hot water if we interview the President's grandchildren' ?”

In both cases, a DOJ lawyer blocked the FBI agent from answering the questions. But the existence of such emails would provide further corroboration to Shapley’s claim that agents were blocked from conducting certain witness interviews, including ones on Hunter Biden’s children.

The FBI agent did acknowledge she had some differences of opinion and recollections from her IRS colleagues, specifically that she did not remember Weiss claiming he had been rejected by DOJ headquarters from being named a special counsel last year.

She also said she did not believe politics played a role in the delays and disputes between the agents and the prosecutors.

“Do you recall if anybody said they thought the case had been politicized?” she was asked.

“I don't,” she answered.

“And, if somebody had said that they thought the case had been impacted by any type of political pressures, would you have recalled that?” 

“I think so,” she also said.

She later added that if she had been asked during a meeting about politics infecting the probe she would have answered: “I would say from my opinion that it has not been politicized by the investigators.

“I think everybody that was – and is working this ongoing matter are doing their jobs and are doing their jobs to the best of their ability. And if there's any political, you know, or anything being politicized, that is outside of the investigative entities."

But she also said there were in fact problems with communications between prosecutors and agents.

“I believe that includes both U.S. Attorney's Offices and the investigative entities as well,” the agent said. “So comprehensive of the whole team, I think that there have been communication issues.

While Shapley and the FBI agent have a difference of opinion on whether politics played a role in the case, the FBI agent saId she had no reason to believe Shapley was lying.

“My experience with Mr. Shapley is very limited.  And so, with that limited experience, no, I didn't have any thoughts that he had lied about anything,” she told congressional investigators.