Big Daddy Joe Biden couldn’t save Hunter this time around

In the end, Hunter Biden and his army of pricey lawyers got tripped up by their own arrogance and overconfidence.

In Joe Biden’s home state, where the Biden name is feared and the Biden family has been royalty for 50 years, a jury of 12 ordinary Delawareans sitting in a courthouse in Wilmington judged the evidence honestly, ignored the intimidating presence of the first lady and found the president’s son guilty on all three felony gun charges.

For once, a Biden has been held accountable, although the gun charges were the least serious of the crimes considered by investigators in the troubled five-year financial probe of Hunter in Delaware.

The first son now faces a felony tax fraud trial in California in September but even there, the charges just skim the surface of the evidence and the links to Joe Biden’s corruption that investigators were blocked from pursuing.

Can’t cover it up

Hunter, 54, assumed his father’s power would protect him, as it has all his life.

But he could have avoided the jury’s verdict and the collateral damage to his father’s presidential campaign if only he had accepted for once some minimal responsibility for his wrongdoing, if he had not instructed his lawyers to demand blanket immunity and threaten prosecutors with “career suicide.”

Hunter still has not admitted ownership of the laptop that formed the backbone of the prosecution case as Government Exhibit 16.

That’s the same laptop Joe Biden lied about when he told the American people before the 2020 election that it was a “Russian plant,” the same laptop that the “Dirty 51” former intelligence officials lied was Russian disinformation, the same laptop that Facebook and Twitter tried to hide by censoring the New York Post.

They went to such lengths because they knew that what was on that laptop was so detrimental to candidate Biden that it would cost him the election.

Hunter Biden, his wife Melissa Cohen Biden and US first lady Jill Biden leave the federal court after the jury finds him guilty on all three counts in his trial on criminal gun charges, in Wilmington, Delaware on June 11, 2024. AFP via Getty Images

Now they refuse to admit their lies because that would mean admitting that they interfered with that election.

But now that the evidence has been laid bare in court about Hunter’s chaotic, crack-addicted life during his father’s vice presidency, it is impossible for the president’s protectors to avoid the truth of why the Chinese and Ukrainians paid his son millions of dollars.

They weren’t paying for Hunter’s business acumen.

They were paying for his father’s favor.

Whistleblowers win

There would have been no guilty verdict, no gun trial, no indictment on tax fraud, and not even last year’s ill-fated sweetheart plea deal if two IRS whistleblowers had not risked their livelihoods to do the right thing.

For IRS Supervisory Agent Gary Shapley, it was a bitter irony to hear special counsel David Weiss thanking Attorney General Merrick Garland Tuesday for giving him the “independence” to pursue the investigation into Hunter.

That independence only came after Shapley and his fellow IRS whistleblower Joe Ziegler lawfully told Congress last year about the obstruction and slow-walking of the investigation under then-Delaware US Attorney Weiss. Garland testified to Congress that Weiss had full authority to pursue charges against Hunter, but that wasn’t the case.

Weiss passively allowed Biden appointees in California and Washington, DC, to refuse to partner with Delaware to bring charges, and then he allowed the statute of limitations to run out on the most serious allegations from 2014 and 2015.

Only when Shapley and Ziegler blew the whistle did Weiss and Hunter’s lawyers stitch together an absurdly generous plea deal that fell apart under the scrutiny of an honest judge in Delaware.

Only then did Garland grant Weiss the independence of special counsel status so he could do damage control.

Shapley and Ziegler went back to Congress again after Hunter testified to the Biden impeachment inquiry in February, providing the House Ways and Means Committee with evidence that the first son lied under oath at least three times.

Their evidence formed the basis for a criminal referral to the DOJ last week by House Republicans recommending the prosecution of Hunter and his uncle James Biden for lying to Congress. Another test for Garland.

Follow the latest on Hunter Biden’s federal gun trial:

‘The right thing’

“This is what happens when people do the right thing,” said Shapley of Tuesday’s guilty verdict.

“This is what happens when you shine light on the darkness. But it shouldn’t have required two people to risk their livelihoods.”

Hunter’s tax trial in September, just weeks before the election, poses a greater political risk to the president because the indictment includes evidence from 2014 and 2015, which covers the Burisma years when Hunter was paid $1 million a year by the corrupt Ukrainian energy company while his father was vice ­president.

It covers Joe ordering the Ukrainian government to fire the honest Ukrainian prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, who was investigating Burisma.

The pressure on Hunter to take a plea deal will be enormous.

The president will likely spin Hunter’s gun conviction as a testament to his own integrity and humble acceptance of the jury verdict, in contrast to Donald Trump’s complaint that he is the victim of a two-tiered justice system.

But nobody buys Joe’s claim that he will not use his power to pardon his son. If his presidency has taught us anything, it is that his “word as a Biden” is ­worthless.

Miranda Devine is the author of “Laptop from Hell.” Her new book, “The Big Guy,” is out in ­September.

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