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House Republicans issue criminal referrals against Hunter Biden, James Biden

Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden, arrives for a closed-door deposition before the House Judiciary Committee and House Oversight Committee as part of an impeachment inquiry into the president on February 28. On Wednesday, Republicans issued criminal referrals recommending he and the president's brother Joe Biden be charged with lying to Congress. Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI
Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden, arrives for a closed-door deposition before the House Judiciary Committee and House Oversight Committee as part of an impeachment inquiry into the president on February 28. On Wednesday, Republicans issued criminal referrals recommending he and the president's brother Joe Biden be charged with lying to Congress. Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

June 5 (UPI) -- House Republicans sent criminal referrals to the Justice Department on Wednesday, recommending President Joe Biden's son and brother be charged with making false statements to Congress.

The Republican committee chairmen, who are leading an impeachment inquiry into the president, sent a 60-page letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and special counsel David Weiss detailing why the DOJ should prosecute Hunter Biden and James Biden.

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"According to the Justice Manual, DOJ should consider Hunter Biden's prior alleged criminal activity when evaluating whether to charge him for the false statements described below," wrote House Oversight Chair James Comer, R-Ky.; Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan, R-Ohio; and Ways and Means Chair Jason Smith, R-Mo.

Hunter and James Biden both sat before the Oversight and Judiciary committees in February for separate depositions as part of the impeachment investigation into the president.

"I did not involve my father in my business," Hunter Biden testified. "Not while I was a practicing lawyer, not in my investments or transactions."

Wednesday's referrals cite two false statements the lawmakers say Hunter Biden made during a Feb. 28 deposition. The lawmakers also claim there was one false statement made by James Biden during a Feb. 21 interview.

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"We've caught President Biden's son and brother making blatant lies to Congress in what appears to be a concerted effort to hide Joe Biden's involvement in his family's scheme," said Comer.

"These criminal referrals are a reflection of criminal wrongdoing by the Biden family, and the Department of Justice must take steps to hold the Bidens accountable," said Jordan.

Hunter Biden is currently on trial in Delaware on unrelated federal gun charges. He has pleaded not guilty to illegally purchasing and possessing a gun while addicted to drugs.

The referrals also come less than a week after former President Donald Trump was convicted in New York on 34 felony charges of falsifying business records in his hush money case.

"If the Attorney General wishes to demonstrate he is not running a two-tiered system of justice and targeting the President's political opponents, he will open criminal investigations into James and Hunter Biden," House Speaker Mike Johnson said Wednesday, as Democrats and James Biden's attorney blasted the move.

"This baseless partisan action is a transparent and cynical attempt to distract from and retaliate for Donald Trump's recent criminal conviction," Biden attorney Paul Fishman countered.

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Ranking Democrat on the Oversight Committee, Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland slammed the referrals as "gotcha accusations."

"This agonizing protracted and completely fruitless investigation has proven only that President Biden was not part of, did not profit from and took no official actions to benefit his family members' business ventures," Raskin said, adding the referrals are "a last-ditch effort to distract from the exoneration of President Biden by offering 'gotcha' accusations against the president's son and brother."

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