Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss, special counsel in the ongoing Hunter Biden investigation, confirmed two President Joe Biden-appointed U.S. Attorneys declined to work with him on the case.
Weiss testified before the House Judiciary Committee on Nov. 7 and described how Biden-appointed U.S. Attorneys Matthew Graves of the District of Columbia and E. Martin Estrada of the Central District of California rejected his requests to partner on the Hunter Biden case, according to a transcript reviewed by the Daily Caller. (RELATED: DOJ Declined Top Hunter Biden Prosecutor’s Request For Additional Authority, Testimony Confirms)
Weiss recalled reaching out to Graves in early March 2022 about partnering on the Hunter Biden case. The two had a five to 10 minute call about the investigation where Weiss briefed Graves. (RELATED: Top Hunter Biden Prosecutor David Weiss Confirms DOJ Tax Division Has Authority To Approve Decisions)
“I had never met or spoken with Mr. Graves before. I explained the situation. I talked a little bit about the investigation, some of the background of the investigation,” Weiss said of the call, according to a transcript reviewed by the Daily Caller.
“He was — you know, he was receptive. Like I said, we agreed that my criminal chief, I think, would reach out to his, and we would move forward,” Weiss added after a follow up question.
Weiss described how his team and Graves’ team had a meeting and Graves’ office made the decision not to partner on the case.
“I know that the teams met, but ultimately, I received word from my staff that the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Columbia had decided not to join the case as a partner or co-counsel moving forward,” Weiss testified.
He later testified that Graves’ decision came in either late March or early April of 2022. Graves testified to the House Judiciary Committee in October and confirmed his refusal to partner with Weiss on the case, according to a transcript reviewed by the Daily Caller.
IRS whistleblowers Gary Shapley and Joseph Ziegler accused the U.S. Attorneys of refusing to cooperate and said Graves’ decision resulted in the statute of limitations expiring for potential tax charges in D.C. related to Hunter Biden’s income from Ukrainian energy firm Burisma Holdings.
Burisma paid Hunter Biden more than $80,000 per month as a board member during the 2014-15 tax years, according to bank records released in August by the House Oversight Committee. Biden had no prior experience in the energy industry or Ukrainian affairs.
The House Ways and Means Committee released a trove of documents in September supporting the IRS whistleblower testimony, including communications about Burisma and memos by Burisma lobbyists recommended to the firm by Hunter Biden.
Weiss confirmed the statute of limitations expired for the 2014-15 tax years and said he will address the situation in his special counsel report at the conclusion of his investigation. (RELATED: Special Counsel Investigating Hunter Biden Still Hasn’t Filled Out His Legal Team Months After Appointment)
“I’ll address it in the report, but even though the statute of limitations has lapsed and even though charges won’t be filed, if there were to be an outstanding tax prosecution, there is no reason to believe that evidence pertaining to prior years, or witnesses involved in prior years, wouldn’t be part of that litigation,” Weiss stated, according to a transcript reviewed by the Daily Caller.
Weiss recalled a conversation he had with Estrada in October 2022 when Estrada informed Weiss his office would not cooperate on the case.
“I had a brief conversation with U.S. Attorney Estrada. It was in October of ’22, and Mr. Estrada informed me that his office was — declined to participate with us or to join us in that case,” Weiss testified. He said he first made contact with Estrada’s predecessor in August 2022 and no decision was made about cooperation until Estrada took office.
Estrada testified before the House Judiciary Committee in October and confirmed his decision not to cooperate on the case, according to a transcript reviewed by the Daily Caller. He also testified about how his predecessor gave special attorney authorization for Assistant U.S. Attorneys in the Delaware office, without disclosing specific details.
Weiss was unable to recall the special attorney authorization and declined to answer procedural questions related to the Hunter Biden probe.
He later repeated his confirmation that Graves and Estrada did not cooperate on the Hunter Biden case.
“D.C. chose not to participate in this case as a partner, that’s correct,” Weiss said, according to a transcript reviewed by the Daily Caller.
“L.A. chose not to join us in this case, that’s correct,” he added after another follow up question. Weiss also described how his request to partner with Graves was based on his desire to potentially prosecute the case against Hunter Biden.
“I was asking him to join in the prosecution of the case, whether they wanted to be part of it,” Weiss explained.
“I would only ask them to partner in the case if I was contemplating prosecution in that jurisdiction, if that was part of the consideration. That’s the only reason it would be asked. Not that a decision had been made, just that it was being considered,” Weiss elaborated.
Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Weiss special counsel in August after Hunter Biden’s guilty plea agreement fell apart in court and the IRS whistleblowers came forward with allegations of special treatment for the first son. Hunter Biden pleaded not guilty in July to two tax misdemeanors in Delaware as a result of his plea deal collapsing.
Weiss filed a motion in August to dismiss Hunter Biden’s Delaware tax charges with the intention of possibly charging him in D.C. or the Central District of California. U.S. District Court Judge Maryellen Noreika approved Weiss’ motion and the Delaware charges were dismissed.
Garland testified to the Judiciary Committee in September and said the U.S. Attorneys “could refuse to partner” with Weiss on the case but could not turn him down. He repeatedly deferred to Weiss on the specifics of the Hunter Biden matter.
Hunter Biden was indicted in September on three federal gun charges. He pleaded not guilty in October and downplayed the charges in an op-ed for USA Today. He is suing the IRS for alleged illegal disclosures by the whistleblowers.
Weiss has not filed any new tax charges against Hunter Biden.
Henry Rodgers contributed to this report.