Judge in Hunter Biden gun case orders search warrants unsealed

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The judge overseeing the federal weapons cases against the president’s son, Hunter Biden, has ordered that search warrants used in two investigations of the embattled first son must be made public.

Delaware District Judge Maryellen Norieka granted a request Friday to unseal four search warrants used in special counsel David Weiss’ investigation of unlawful firearm possession and tax fraud cases against the younger Biden, the New York Post reported.

The warrants are likely to shed light on the feds’ legal basis for seizing Biden’s electronic devices, as well as the evidence used to build the two criminal cases against him, the outlet said. 

The warrants were referenced in court papers earlier this month by Weiss’ office as it argued against Hunter’s bid to throw out the charges – prompting an independent journalist, Marcy Wheeler, to seek their unsealing.

Neither Biden’s defense team nor Weiss’ office objected to the records being unsealed. It is not immediately clear when the documents will be accessible, the Post reported. 

Two warrants date from Aug. 29, 2019, and July 10, 2020, and were obtained by tax authorities and the FBI to look into Hunter Biden’s Apple iCloud account. A third search warrant was obtained on Dec. 13, 2019, to examine the first son’s now-infamous laptop.

The fourth warrant was obtained Dec. 4 last year and used to collect electronic evidence in connection with the gun case – nearly three months after the indictment against the first son was unsealed.

Hunter Biden pleaded not guilty in October to three federal gun charges brought by Weiss. The president’s son has been charged with lying about his drug use in October 2018 on a form to buy a gun that he kept for about 11 days. He could face up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Defense attorney Abbe Lowell said in court the defense will file a motion to dismiss the charges, challenging their constitutionality. An appeals court previously found that a federal ban on drug users having guns violates the Second Amendment under recent Supreme Court precedent.

Earlier this summer, Hunter Biden agreed to plead guilty to misdemeanor tax charges and would have also avoided prosecution on the gun charges had he stayed out of trouble for two years. It was the culmination of a years-long investigation by federal prosecutors into the business dealings of the president’s son, and the agreement would have dispensed with criminal proceedings and spared the Bidens weeks of headlines as the election loomed.

But the deal fell apart after a judge raised several questions about the arrangement.

In December, Hunter Biden’s lawyers filed a motion in federal court in Delaware to dismiss the indictment against him over gun charges, saying it ‘violates’ the collapsed plea agreement, and maintain it is ‘still in effect’ between the president’s son and federal prosecutors. 

Earlier this month, federal prosecutors said a brown leather pouch used by Hunter Biden to store a gun had cocaine on it.

Prosecutors had asked a judge to reject Hunter Biden’s efforts to dismiss gun charges because investigators found cocaine residue on the pouch used to hold his gun.

Prosecutors told the judge that ‘the strength of the evidence against him is overwhelming,’ rejecting Hunter Biden’s claims that he was being singled out for political reasons.

Hunter Biden previously made incriminating statements about his drug use in a 2021 memoir, but now investigators are saying the cocaine was found on the gun pouch after it was pulled from a state police vault last year.

A chemist with the FBI determined the residue was cocaine, prosecutors said.

Fox News Digital’s Chris Pandolfo and Greg Whener contributed to this report. 

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