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David Weiss, the US attorney who holds Hunter Biden’s fate in his hands

David Weiss, the little-known US attorney for Delaware, will soon step into the spotlight as the Justice Department’s prosecutor with the power to file potential criminal charges against President Joe Biden’s troubled son Hunter.

Multiple outlets reported Thursday that the FBI believes it has collected enough evidence to charge Hunter Biden with crimes related to tax fraud and lying about his drug use when he purchased a firearm, and the decision of whether to charge the president’s son with those or other crimes rests with Weiss.

Weiss, 66, was nominated by then-President Donald Trump in November 2017 and confirmed by the Senate in February 2018.

In February 2021, Joe Biden asked all Senate-confirmed US attorneys appointed by Trump for their resignations, with Weiss being the exception. John Durham was asked to step down as the US attorney for Connecticut but was kept on as special counsel for his criminal review of the Trump-Russia investigation.

Hunter Biden revealed he was under federal investigation in Delaware for his taxes shortly after the 2020 election, saying: “I am confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately, including with the benefit of professional tax advisors.”

The younger Biden is also reportedly being scrutinized for possible money laundering, as well as possible foreign lobbying violations under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Trump announced his intent to appoint Weiss on Nov. 17, 2017, with the White House dear the prosecutor shared Trump’s “vision” for “Making America Safe Again.”

Weiss had already taken over as acting US attorney in March 2017 after then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions asked Weiss’s predecessor, Charles Oberly, and 45 other US attorneys appointed by President Barack Obama to submit their resignations.

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Delaware Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons, both Democrats, had urged Trump to accept their proposed nomination of Weiss for the role and evaluated his selection.

“David Weiss is an excellent choice for US Attorney for the District of Delaware,” Carper said. “During his combined 16 years in the US Attorney’s Office, he has prosecuted corruption, money laundering, drug offenses, mail and wire fraud, and he spearheaded the successful effort to establish New Castle County as a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area.”

Coons declared: “David is a career prosecutor and dedicated public servant, longtime Delawarean, and valued member of our law enforcement community. I want to thank the White House for working with Senator Carper and me to present an excellent nominee for US Attorney.”

Weiss was easily confirmed in a voice vote by the Senate on Feb. 15, 2018.

“I am honored to have the opportunity to serve the people of Delaware as United States Attorney,” Weiss said after his confirmation. “I am thankful to President Trump for this appointment and to Senators Carper and Coons for their continued support throughout the confirmation process.”

Weiss had previously twice served as first assistant US attorney from 2007 to 2009 and then from 2012 to 2018, and he also had been the acting and interim US attorney under Obama from 2009 to 2011.

He attended the Washington University in St. Louis as an undergraduate and went to the Widener University School of Law. After graduating law school, he worked as a law clerk for then-Justice Andrew Christie of the Delaware Supreme Court in 1984, then as an assistant US attorney from 1986 to 1989. He also spent years in private practice.

The task before Weiss is politically fraught, and his investigation has been largely opaque.

Biden held a lucrative position on the board of Ukrainian energy giant Burisma when his father was vice president. He also pursued business deals in China and elsewhere during and after his father’s tenure, ranking in millions thanks to these associations.

Records show the younger Biden believed some of his Chinese business partners were connected to Chinese intelligence and that he worried about the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Ron Johnson (R-WI) have demanded the Justice Department and the FBI to launch a full investigation into Biden’s laptopincluding the revelation unearthed by the Washington Examiner that Joe Biden apparently unwittingly financed his son’s participation in an escort ring tied to Russia.

Whistleblower allegations emerged in July that FBI supervisory intelligence agent Brian Auten opened an assessment in August 2020, which was used by FBI headquarters to label accurate information about Hunter Biden as false, according to disclosures made public by Grassley. A whistleblower said Timothy Thibaultthe now-former FBI assistant special agent in charge of the Washington Field Office, shut down a line of inquiry into the younger Biden in October 2020 despite some of the details being known to be true at the time.

FBI Director Christopher Wray said he found these whistleblower allegations “deeply troubling” when asked about them in early August.

Grassley has said the FBI investigation into Biden may now be hobbled because of the actions taken inside the bureau to limit the inquiry.

In May, Grassley and Johnson sent a letter to Weiss, asking about possible conflicts of interest and the existence of recusals within the Justice Department, raised concerns about the president’s son’s claims of judicial influence in Delaware, pressed the federal prosecutor on whether he was being properly supported by the DOJ, and inquired about what steps he had taken during his investigation, including whether he had issued grand jury subpoenas related to Biden’s Chinese business dealings.

DOJ headquarters was clearly alerted to the letter, because it was it, not Weiss, that responded to Grassley and Johnson, largely denying their requests for information.

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Then-Attorney General William Barr rejected the idea of ​​a special counsel to investigate Biden in December 2020, but now says Attorney General Merrick Garland should grant those powers to Weiss.

Dozens of Senate Republicans have said Weiss must be given special counsel protections and authoritiesand dozens of House Republicans called upon Garland to appoint a special counsel for the investigation.

“He is supervising the investigation,” Garland said of Weiss in April. “There will not be interference of any political or improper kind.”

Garland added, “I’m quite comfortable with the United States attorney for that district continuing in the role that he is playing,” when asked if a special counsel is needed.

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