FBI Source Charged With Biden Lies Says Russia Was Involved

Alexander Smirnov has links to Russian intelligence, prosecutors say
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 15, 2024 7:15 PM CST
Updated Feb 21, 2024 12:30 AM CST
FBI Informant Charged With Lying to Agents to Hurt Bidens
President Biden, right, hugs his son Hunter Biden on Hunter's birthday after dining at the Ivy in Los Angeles on Feb. 4.   (AP Photo/Stephanie Scarbrough)
UPDATE Feb 21, 2024 12:30 AM CST

The former FBI informant charged with lying to agents about President Biden, son Hunter Biden, and their business dealings has "extensive" contacts with Russian intelligence agencies and implicated those agencies in the alleged lies, Department of Justice prosecutors say. After his arrest, Alexander Smirnov told authorities that "officials associated with Russian intelligence were involved in passing a story" about Hunter Biden, according to a court filing cited by NPR. During a court appearance Tuesday, a judge ordered Smirnov released on a personal recognizance bond, against the government's wishes, CBS News reports.

Feb 15, 2024 7:15 PM CST

An FBI informant has been charged with lying to agents about the business dealings of President Biden and his son Hunter. Special counsel David Weiss announced the indictment of Alexander Smirnov, returned by a grand jury in Los Angeles, on Thursday, the Washington Post reports. Smirnov, 43, was arrested Wednesday at an airport in Las Vegas after returning from a trip overseas. The case against him emerged from Weiss' investigation of Hunter Biden. The 37-page indictment, which can be found here, says Smirnov "provided false derogatory information to the FBI" about father and son after Joe Biden became a candidate for president in 2020, per NBC News.

He disliked the Democratic candidate, the Justice Department said, and used his routine contacts with Burisma, the Ukrainian energy company that Hunter Biden worked for, to damage him with bribery accusations. The indictment says Smirnov repeatedly expressed his dislike of Joe Biden to his FBI handler and once texted the agent that Biden was "going to jail." Abbe Lowell, Hunter Biden's lawyer, said that the new charges show that "Republicans have built their conspiracies about Hunter and his family on lies told by people with political agendas, not facts. We were right, and the air is out of their balloon."

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Congressional Republicans have relied on Smirnov's accusations for roughly a year in building an impeachment case against the president, per CNN, though they didn't use his name. When he announced the impeachment inquiry, then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said "a trusted FBI informant has alleged a bribe to the Biden family." The FBI is using some of the memos that Republicans released in the prosecution of Smirnov. House Oversight Chair James Comer said Thursday that their case was not just built on Smirnov's information and that the FBI had vouched for his credibility. (More Hunter Biden stories.)

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