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Prosecutors Spend The First Day Of Testimony In Hunter Biden’s Gun Trial Detailing His Drug Problems


President Joe Biden’s son Hunter was portrayed by federal prosecutors on Tuesday as dishonest and addicted, a man whose bad habits ensnared loved ones and who knew what he was doing when he lied on a federal form to buy a gun in 2018.

In his opening statement, attorney Abbe Lowell stated that in the brief time that Hunter Biden had the gun, he did nothing with it, and the weapon was never even loaded. Jurors also saw for the first time the document that lies at the heart of the case, and Biden’s lawyer claimed that his client did not believe he was in the throes of addiction when he stated in the paperwork that he did not have a drug problem.

“You will see that he is not guilty,” Lowell said.

Hunter Biden has been charged with three felonies stemming from the purchase of the Colt revolver when he was, according to his memoir, addicted to crack. He is charged with fabricating information on the application to indicate he does not use drugs, lying to a federally licensed gun dealer, and possessing the weapon illegally for 11 days.

As the 2024 election approaches, the first day of testimony in the case brought back unpleasant memories for the president and his family and disclosed fresh, extremely intimate information about some of their struggles with addiction. The first lady observed from the front row of the courtroom for a portion of the day.

James Biden, the president’s brother, who is close to Hunter and helped his nephew with past drug treatments, is anticipated to testify before the jury, as per the attorneys. They will also discover the details of Hallie Biden’s brief romance with Hunter, her husband, Beau Biden, as well as how she became addicted to crack.

Hallie took the gun from Hunter out of fear for what he might do with it, and he threw it into the trash at a nearby market. The weapon was eventually turned over to the police after being found by someone who was gathering cans.

Tuesday was the president’s day in Washington, where he made an announcement regarding an immigration order and gave congressional leaders a picnic before leaving for France later in the day. For the remainder of the week, he will not be in. They were to meet in Europe, according to Jill Biden.

The elder Biden, who has always been protective of his only surviving son and his sobriety, is concerned about the trial’s potential effects on him. The president’s allies fear that he will be forced to watch as his past transgressions are examined in public.

Prosecutors focused for hours on Hunter Biden’s drug use on Tuesday, utilizing his own statements and correspondence to highlight the severity of his addiction and imply that it persisted at the time he purchased the firearm.

The jurors were shown his old laptop, which he had left at a Delaware repair shop and never picked up. Once the contents were leaked to Republicans in 2020, messages regarding his professional and personal life that were extremely personal were exposed. Subsequently, he filed a lawsuit regarding the disclosed data.

A message about a desperate attempt to purchase drugs was read aloud by an FBI agent from messages saved on his devices. Large cash withdrawals were evident in the data, along with receipts from a detox center he visited prior to relapsing.

Less than a minute later, Hunter replied to Hallie, telling her that he was “sleeping on a car smoking crack on 4th street and Rodney,” in response to her writing, “I called you 500 times in past 24 hours,” in one of their exchanges the day after he purchased the gun.

“There’s my truth,” he added in a follow-up text.

However, the FBI agent testified under cross-examination that Hunter Biden sent fewer messages in October 2018, around the time he bought the gun, about seeking drugs than in February 2019, a later period in which Lowell said his client was seriously struggling with addiction.

Inquiring further about the rehab facility’s receipts, Lowell asked the agent if she was aware of whether he had received drug or alcohol treatment; she responded that she was unable to answer this question.

Long audio snippets from Hunter Biden’s memoir, “Beautiful Things,” were also played for the jury. In them, he describes his return to Delaware around the time of the gun purchase and his drug addiction after his brother passed away from cancer in 2015.

After using a tissue to dab at her eyes, his sister Ashley Biden eventually left the courtroom where she was watching. After lunch, Jill Biden, who was expected in Washington with her husband, departed.

The proceedings come after the collapse of a deal with prosecutors that would have avoided the spectacle of a trial so close to the 2024 election.

Hunter Biden entered a not-guilty plea and contended that the Justice Department was unfairly singled out for his treatment, following Republican criticism of the now-canceled plea agreement as preferential treatment for the Democratic president’s son.

“No one is allowed to lie on a federal form like that, even Hunter Biden,” prosecutor Derek Hines said. “He crossed the line when he chose to buy a gun and lied about a federal background check. The defendant’s choice to buy a gun is why we are here.”

“When the defendant filled out that form, he knew he was a drug addict,” and prosecutors don’t have to prove he was using the firearm the firearm the day he purchased it, Hines said.

The form inquires about whether you “are” a drug user, according to Lowell. It does not ask, ‘Have you ever been?'” and he implied that when the president’s son bought the gun, he did not consider himself to be a drug addict.

Lowell stated that it is important to take into account his mental state at the time of the purchase rather than “what he wrote in a book in 2021.”

Hunter Biden could spend up to 25 years in prison if found guilty; however, first-time offenders typically do not receive sentences anywhere near this high, so it is unlikely that the judge would sentence him to that much time.

The trial is taking place barely a few days after New York City jurors found presumed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump guilty of thirty-four felonies. Although there is no connection between the two criminal cases, their close proximity highlights how the courts have assumed a central role in the 2024 campaign.

Hunter Biden’s wife, Melissa, confronted Garrett Ziegler, a prominent critic of Biden and former Trump aide, on Tuesday, telling him, “You have no right to be here,” and then yelling an expletive. Hunter Biden, who said Ziegler had accessed and altered the laptop data in violation of computer privacy laws, has filed a lawsuit against Ziegler.

In September, Hunter Biden is scheduled to stand trial in California regarding allegations that he omitted to pay $1.4 million in taxes. The agreement with the prosecutors last July was supposed to have settled both cases and marked the end of a multi-year inquiry into his business activities.

However, some peculiar aspects of the agreement were questioned by Judge Maryellen Noreika, who was nominated to the bench by Trump. The agreement collapsed because the attorneys were unable to reach a consensus regarding her inquiries. Hunter Biden was indicted a month after Attorney General Merrick Garland named David Weiss, a former U.S. attorney for Delaware, as a special counsel in August.

Garland appeared before the Republican-led House Judiciary Committee in Washington on Tuesday. The committee has been looking into the president and his family, and its chairman has been leading the charge on an impeachment investigation that has been stalled because of Hunter Biden’s financial activities.

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