Hunter Biden’s daughter Naomi Biden testifies at gun trial

Hunter Biden’s defense team called Naomi Biden, his daughter with ex-wife Kathleen Buehl, to testify Friday at his trial on charges related to his Purchasing a firearm in October 2018. Much of the questioning focused on a trip Hunter Biden took to New York to trade cars with his daughter, who had borrowed his truck for a few days during the October period that Hunter Biden was in possession of the firearm.

Over the weekend or Monday morning, Hunter Biden’s lawyers will reveal whether he will take the stand in his own defense. President Biden’s brother, James “Jimmy” Biden, was scheduled to testify Friday, but the court was adjourned earlier than expected. If Hunter Biden tests, prosecutors say they may call an additional witness.

Naomi Biden Tests

Biden Hunter’s lawyers questioned Naomi Biden about her interactions with her father in August and October 2018. Naomi Biden, who is also an attorney, was tested on whether she saw her father in Los Angeles in August 2018, after not seeing him. not having seen for a prolonged period. . She said that she and her boyfriend Peter Neal, who is now her husband, drove from Wyoming to see her father while he was in rehab for drug addiction. They met at the end of August at a coffee shop with his sober coach for lunch.

“He seemed like the clearest I had seen him since my uncle died,” she said. “I told him I was so proud of him and I was so proud to introduce him to Peter.”

She then described an interaction with him in mid-October 2018 in New York, when they traded Hunter Biden’s truck for the Cadillac that belonged to her grandfather, Joe Biden, who was then the former vice-president. president. Hallie Bidenwho was romantically involved with Hunter Biden at the time, tested this She found the gun in her truck and I threw it away in October. 23 to 11 days after purchase. The messages exchanged between Naomi Biden and her father regarding the car exchange in New York took place over three days, between October 1 and October 1. 17-19, during the period he had the weapon in his possession.

Naomi Biden and Neal had borrowed Hunter Biden’s truck to help Neal move his belongings from Washington, D.C., so he could join her in New York. Naomi Biden said the truck was in “good condition,” without any drug paraphernalia, and that her father appeared to be in good shape at the time.

But under cross-examination by prosecutor Leo Wise, Naomi Biden admitted, “Yes, I knew he suffered from addiction,” but said he never used illegal drugs in front of her. “After my uncle (Beau Biden) died, things got bad.” She admitted that she never observed what her father looked like when he was using drugs.

Naomi Biden began speaking increasingly softly as the cross-examination continued, but she maintained her composure, even when asked to review her text messages with her father from October 1. 18, 2018. Wise focused on this visit to try to establish that Hunter Biden was still a drug addict and that the drug paraphernalia later found in the truck belonged to him.

There were text messages coming from Hunter Biden late at night, and their schedules made it difficult for the two men to meet, in part, Naomi Biden later said, because she had a law internship in Brooklyn. Wise read a text from Naomi Biden that read in part: “I just want to spend time with you. »Hunter Biden reportedly responded by apologizing for being unreachable. “I’m sorry I’ve been so unreachable, it’s not fair to you,” he wrote around 10:30 p.m. on the evening of October 1. 18.

Wise asked her if she knew that at that time her father was meeting someone named Frankie (a suspected drug dealer) that evening at his hotel and gave him access to his Wells Fargo account. She repeatedly responded, “No.”

During these exchanges, Hunter Biden sometimes leaned forward on the defense table, his eyes fixed on his daughter, his hand covering his mouth. The mood in the Biden family section where the first lady and other Biden family members were seated was particularly tense during Naomi Biden’s testimony.

Hunter Biden wipes away a tear during his daughter Naomi Biden’s testimony during her gun possession trial, Friday, June 7, 2024.

Sketch by William J. Hennessy, Jr.

When Naomi Biden was excused, she hugged her father and they shared a kiss on the cheek before heading out. After court adjourned for lunch, Hunter Biden reached for Jill Biden as he was leaving, taking her hand. She walked slowly, letting go as he went.

Before Naomi Biden’s testimony, former StarQuest Shooters employee Jason Turner and gun store owner Ron Palmieri were the defense’s first two witnesses. Turner tested the arms sale and background checks for Hunter Biden’s gun purchase, and he admitted that he added the additional identifying information; it was shown in a court exhibit. Palmieri tested confirmed that he approved the passport used as identification for the purchase and that he never interacted with Hunter Biden during the sale.

The prosecution’s final two witnesses Friday morning were an FBI chemist and a DEA agent.

Dr. Jason Brewer’s test confirmed that he had identified a “minimal quantity” of cocaine from his analysis of the residual white powder on the leather pouch recovered with the gun. He said he was not authorized to test for fingerprints or the origin of the residue. During cross-examination led by David Kolansky, the defense highlighted the timing of the forensic analysis, five years after its initial recovery by law enforcement.

DEA Supervisory Agent Joshua Romig decoded some of the language in Hunter Biden’s 2018-2019 text messages, in which he referred to “baby powder,” “soft stuff” and to “party favors”. Romig said all of these terms refer to a form of cocaine.

It tested the origins, transportation and distribution of cocaine and analyzed certain drug paraphernalia, scales and measurements depicted in photos of Biden’s text messages. During cross-examination, Hunter Biden’s attorney, Abbe Lowell, again focused on the timing, noting that the texts and images referenced by the prosecution were exchanged before and after the gun was purchased on fire in October. Romig noted the exception of an October text in which Hunter Biden explicitly mentioned smoking crack.

What are the accusations against Hunter Biden?

Hunter Biden is charged with three felonies stemming from his purchase of a revolver in October 2018. Two of the charges relate to accusations that he made false statements on a federal firearms form about his use of drug, certifying that he was not a user or addict. to any controlled substance at a time when prosecutors allege he was addicted to crack cocaine.

The other charge relates to alleged illegal possession of the weapon, possessing the weapon for 11 days before Hallie Biden found and disposed of the weapon. Biden Hunter has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Hallie Biden, who is also the widow of Hunter Biden’s brother Beau Biden, testified Thursday that she “panicked” when she found the gun, calling it “stupid,” but she feared the one of the children finds it.

She told the court she discovered it while emptying her car, in which she often looked for drugs and alcohol. Prosecutors presented parking lot surveillance footage that showed her walking into a grocery store parking lot and throwing the gun in a dumpster, followed by another clip showing her returning to the store to get the gun.

While Hunter Biden’s history of substance abuse is well known — he wrote about it in his memoir “Beautiful Things” — Lowell sought to question whether he knowingly omitted information from the disclosure form. In his opening statement, Lowell said many addicts are “in denial” about their drug use, and he also argued that Hunter Biden did not consider himself an addict when he purchased the gun.

Prosecutors on Thursday showed texts between Hunter Biden and Hallie Biden dating back to October. 2018 – when he allegedly bought the gun – where Hunter Biden said he was “buying,” as well as another in which she said her son was sitting near a “rod” or pipe on crack, in his house.

Hallie Biden also told the court that Hunter Biden introduced her to crack cocaine during their dating relationship.

“It’s a terrible experience that I’ve had and I’m embarrassed and ashamed, and I regret that time in my life,” she said.

ABC News’ David Muir asked President Biden in an interview Thursday if he would do so. exclude forgiving your son if he is found guilty. Mr. Biden replied: “Yes.”

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