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Ex-FBI informant to remain jailed before trial for allegedly lying about Biden family

By Chris Benson
Hunter Biden speaks at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC in December 2023. Former FBI informant Alexander Smirnov, the star witness in the GOP-led inquiry into President Joe Biden, is to remain in jail as he awaits trial for allegedly lying to the federal government. File Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI
Hunter Biden speaks at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC in December 2023. Former FBI informant Alexander Smirnov, the star witness in the GOP-led inquiry into President Joe Biden, is to remain in jail as he awaits trial for allegedly lying to the federal government. File Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 26 (UPI) -- A California judge said Monday that ex-FBI informant Alexander Smirnov must stay in jail as he awaits trial for allegedly lying to federal authorities about President Joe Biden and his son Hunter's supposed financial deals with Ukranian oil company Burisma.

Smirnov, 43, has plead not guilty and was re-arrested Thursday during a meeting with his attorneys in Las Vegas -- where he is a resident -- after prosecutors appealed a decision that allowed him to remain free.

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He was re-arrested in Nevada over concerns of his access to firearms.

There was concern over Smirnov's alleged ties to foreign intelligence and political figure and access to $6 million in funds as his lawyer urged Wright to release the former FBI informant on GPS monitoring.

Magisterial District Judge Otis Wright acknowledged Smirnov's "habit or practice" with "making false statements" as he made his decision Monday to keep Smirnov behind bars.

Wright commented that "there is nothing garden variety" about Smirnov's case as Wright failed to provide further context to his decision to keep him in jail.

Smirnov's legal counsel suggested that Wright had overstepped his judicial authority by not providing a sufficient explanation in his Monday decision.

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The prosecution alleges Smirnov -- a dual Israeli-U.S. citizen who faces a maximum of 25 year jail sentence if convicted -- had plans to leave the United States to meet with "multiple foreign intelligence agencies" who could then relocate him outside the country.

A court document unsealed Friday said that the implication his defense attorneys had participated "in an unlawful plot by advocating for (Smirnov's) release" was "wrong."

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