Hunter Biden, President Joe Biden’s son, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to one count of willful failure to file his federal taxes. This plea deal comes just one month after the President declared Hunter innocent of all criminal accusations.
The Justice Department launched an investigation into Hunter Biden in 2016, just after his father declared his candidacy for the presidency. Reports claimed that the investigation was intended to ascertain if the then–vice president attempted to influence the feds to keep a lid on the probe.
Recently, the investigation has focused, at least in part, on Hunter‘s purchase of a gun while using crack cocaine, which is a federal offense. The first son has reportedly reached a settlement in which the government drops the gun charge against him in exchange for a guilty plea to the tax charges.
Hunter Biden agreed to the plea deal in order to avoid a jail sentence. He admitted Tuesday in a press conference that he had “willfully neglected” to pay his taxes for years and that he now takes “full responsibility for his conduct and the consequences arising from it.”
“My conduct was shameful and wrong,” Hunter Biden said. “I made a mistake and accept full responsibility for it.”
The agreement includes the payment of $107,000 in owed taxes and interest. Hunter Biden is also expected to pay a $30,000 fine. The tax offenses he pleaded guilty to encompass the tax years of 2014–2019.
The first son‘s guilty plea is a blow to President Biden, who previously defended his son and asserted he was innocent of the accusations leveled against him.
“My son‘s done nothing wrong,” Joe Biden said on MSNBC last month when asked about the investigation. “I trust him, I have faith in him, and it impacts my presidency by making me feel proud of him.”
There is still no concrete evidence to suggest that the Biden administration attempted to influence the investigation into Hunter. But the guilty plea serves as a reminder of the challenges Joe Biden may face as long as questions linger around his son‘s actions.