Hunter Biden 'has been working to unwind his investment' in Chinese firm: White House

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The White House says President Biden’s son, Hunter, has been working to unwind his investment in a Chinese company affiliated with the Chinese government, following pledges from the president that his family would not have any foreign business ties or would avoid anything that could appear to be a conflict of interest.

Hunter Biden has reportedly been under criminal investigation as far back as 2018 as federal authorities scrutinize his taxes and potentially his foreign business dealings. The 51-year-old’s financial transactions with China might be at the forefront.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki was asked on Friday about reports that Hunter Biden still owns a 10% stake in a Chinese investment firm formed with state-owned entities. She told the press that the president’s son “has been working to unwind his investment, but I would certainly point you — he’s a private citizen — I would point you to him or his lawyers on the outside on any update.”

Reports in late January showed that Hunter Biden continued to own a 10% stake in a private Chinese equity firm called BHR Partners.

Through one of his lawyers, George Mesires, Hunter had promised to leave the board of the Chinese firm by the end of October 2019, but his resignation was only submitted to China’s National Credit Information Publicity System in the spring of 2020. Two Chinese business websites run by Baidu and Qixin each show updates with Hunter’s name being removed from the BHR board of directors last April, but both also still show a limited liability corporation owned solely by the younger Biden, Skaneateles LLC, as still being a “sponsor/shareholder” with 3 million yuan invested in the company, purportedly comprising the 10% stake in the China-based business venture.

“BHR, with its unique mixed ownership, combines the resources and platforms of China’s largest financial institutions (including Bank of China, China Development Bank Capital, Harvest Fund, Postal Savings Bank of China, China Life and the National Council of Social Security Fund) and the networks and know-how of our U.S.-based investment fund and advisory firm shareholders,” the Chinese BHR’s company website states, adding that, since launching in December 2013, it now manages “over RMB15 billion in assets” — the equivalent of more than $2 billion.

Biden told CNN in December that “my son, my family will not be involved in any business, any enterprise, that is in conflict with or appears to be in conflict, with the appropriate distance from, the presidency and government.” He promised during an Iowa campaign event in October 2019 that “no one in my family will have an office in the White House, will sit in on meetings as if they are a Cabinet member, will, in fact, have any business relationship with anyone that relates to a foreign corporation or a foreign country — period, period, end of story.”

Nicholas McQuaid, a former federal prosecutor, was appointed acting chief of the Justice Department’s criminal division at the start of the Biden administration. Hunter Biden confirmed in early December, after his father won the 2020 election, that his taxes were subject to a federal criminal investigation. McQuaid was a partner at Latham & Watkins with Biden’s new defense lawyer Christopher Clark and worked on cases with him right until McQuaid took the job at the Justice Department, according to court filings reviewed by the Washington Examiner.

So far, the Justice Department refuses to comment directly on the situation. An agency spokesperson would only tell the Washington Examiner on-the-record that “while not speaking to any particular matter, all department employees are governed by the department’s ethics rules including rules concerning recusal.”

Two Republican senators, Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, are pushing acting Attorney General Monty Wilkinson for answers as Biden’s pick to lead the Justice Department, Judge Merrick Garland, awaits Senate confirmation.

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