Prosecution in Hunter Biden’s Gun Case Asks Judge To Include Laptop as Evidence, Exclude ‘Sweetheart’ Plea Deal

The government argues it’s important to prove he was using drugs when he purchased and possessed the weapon.

Kent Nishimura/Getty Images
Hunter Biden departs a House Oversight Committee meeting on January 10, 2024, at Washington, D.C. Kent Nishimura/Getty Images

Prosecutors in Hunter Biden’s illegal gun purchase trial are asking the judge to include the contents of Mr. Biden’s infamous laptop as admissible evidence and exclude details about his plea agreement, which fell apart last year. The judge’s rulings could come in a matter of days, as the trial is set to begin on June 3. 

On Tuesday, the government filed several motions with respect to what evidence will be included in the trial and what will be excluded. They argue that the first son will try to convince a jury that he is nothing more than a drug addict who has made a recovery. 

On the issue of admitting the contents of his laptop, Special Counsel David Weiss’s office argues that it is pivotal to proving their case that the first son was actively using drugs in the period that he purchased and possessed the weapon. 

“The underlying source materials are self-authenticating and admissible,” the government writes of the evidence recovered from the laptop. “The summary chart summarizes electronic evidence obtained from Apple, Inc., including four backup files, and electronic evidence obtained from the defendant’s laptop and hard drive, including two backup files. All six backup files were certified as authentic by certified forensic examiners and are self-authenticating.”

The government specifically asks the judge to allow for the use of a “summary chart” — a distillation of the contents of Mr. Biden’s laptop that allegedly implicate him in this illegal gun purchase and possession. Because prosecutors have obtained 18,000 pages of emails, text messages, photographs, and other content, they say the summary chart will suffice.

The government does want to exclude “the use of self-serving and irrelevant statements” from Mr. Biden’s memoir, “Beautiful Things,” which they feel could be weaponized by the defense to paint a dishonest portrait of the first son as a victim of right-wing smears. 

As part of a plea deal negotiated — and discarded — last year, Mr. Biden would’ve been able to avoid jail time by entering a probationary pretrial diversion program for his gun purchase. 

Prosecutors now want all information about that plea deal excluded from the coming trial. 

“The United States, by and through undersigned counsel, respectfully moves this Court to exclude argument and questioning related to the defendant’s potential punishment, plea negotiations, the diversion agreement, or the July 26, 2023 hearing because a defendant is not entitled to have the jury informed of sentencing consequences,” they argue. 

“Any statements made in plea negotiations were ‘statements made in the course of plea discussions,’” and are therefore “inadmissible,” they write. 

In another motion, the government asks the judge to lower the standard of proof on the question of whether Mr. Biden was high at the very moment he bought the gun. They say they should only have to prove he was smoking crack while he was in possession of the gun, which was for 11 days in 2018. 

“The government believes that the defendant will attempt to improperly argue to the jury, or suggest through questioning of witnesses, that the government must establish his use of a controlled substance on the day that he purchased the firearm. That is not the law,” the prosecution writes of Mr. Biden’s addiction. 

They say they will use excerpts from his memoir to prove that Mr. Biden himself admitted to be using crack cocaine at the time of the possession. They also want his laptop, hard drive, and iCloud account to be admissible because it includes text messages and photographs related to his drug purchases and use.

The New York Sun

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