Hunter Biden’s federal gun charges trial slated for early June

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A federal judge on Wednesday ruled that the president’s son, Hunter Biden, will go on trial for federal firearms charges as soon as June 3. 

U.S. District Judge Maryellen Noreika set the date during a telephonic hearing Wednesday, though she is still weighing several defense motions to toss out the case against Hunter Biden. 

Hunter Biden, son of U.S. President Joe Biden, makes a surprise appearance at a House Oversight Committee markup and meeting to vote on whether to hold Biden in contempt of Congress for failing to respond to a request to testify to the House, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., January 10, 2024. (REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

The younger Biden has pleaded not guilty to lying about his drug use when he filled out a form to buy a gun in October 2018 – a violation of federal law.  

Biden has acknowledged his struggles with substance abuse during that period, including crack cocaine, but his lawyers have said he didn’t break the law and another nonviolent, first-time offender would not have been charged.

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He was indicted after a plea deal that would have resolved the case without the spectacle of a trial imploded in July 2023 when a judge who was supposed to approve it instead raised more questions. 

Hunter Biden’s attorneys have since sought to have the case tossed out by arguing that prosecutors bowed to political pressure after the agreement was publicly pilloried by Republicans – including former President Trump – as a “sweetheart deal.”

Hunter on Capitol Hill

Hunter Biden, son of U.S. President Joe Biden, departs a House Oversight Committee meeting at Capitol Hill on January 10, 2024, in Washington, DC. (Kent Nishimura/Getty Images)

Prosecutors have said there’s no evidence the case is politically motivated, the evidence against him is “overwhelming” and the immunity deal blew up with the rest of the plea deal.

Biden’s attorneys also argued that immunity provisions from the original deal are still in effect, and defense attorney Abbe Lowell pressed Judge Noreika to make a final ruling on the matter.

Noreika said she hadn’t fully decided how she would handle the case’s four pending motions to dismiss but wanted to ensure that time for any trial would be available on her calendar.

The legal team for lawyer Derek Hines, who represents Special Counsel David Weiss, anticipates it will take three to give days to present the Delaware gun case to a jury. Lowell said he would need two days to present his case to a jury. 

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Hunter Biden has also pleaded not guilty to the separate tax charges in Los Angeles alleging a four-year scheme to avoid paying $1.4 million in taxes while living an extravagant lifestyle. The trial in that case is scheduled from late June until mid-July. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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