Hunter Biden, now under investigation for suspected tax fraud, owed a “substantial” amount to the IRS in 2018, apparently for 2017 and prior years when he was receiving regular income from a Ukrainian oligarch and Chinese firms tied to the Communist Party, an email shows.
The October 2018 email from his certified public accountant to Mr. Biden, son of President-elect Joseph R. Biden, showed there was miscommunication between the CPA and Hunter. It also shows the IRS had been assessing Hunter Biden late fees for unpaid taxes.
The CPA told him “The taxes owed are substantial” and listed $600,000 in personal taxes and $204,000 owed for Owasco, Hunter Biden‘s D.C. law firm.
Two months later, Mr. Biden told his office manager that his income was drying up, an email shows.
Mr. Biden acknowledged in a Dec. 9 public statement that the U.S. attorney’s office in Delaware had informed his attorney that he is under investigation for his “tax affairs.”
According to a Sept. 23 Senate Republican report, based on U.S. Treasury files, Hunter Biden began receiving millions of dollars in 2014 from a Russian oligarch and from Mykola Zlochevsky, the oligarch-owner of Burisma Holdings, an oil and gas firm in Ukraine.
Hunter Biden joined the board of directors in April 2014, a week after his business partner, Devon Archer, took a seat. At the time, Vice President Biden had become the Obama administration’s point man on fighting the country’s corruption.
The year 2017 was significant for Hunter Biden’s network of financial investment entities and shell companies. The Senate report indicates that Mr. Biden, after several years of wooing Chinese tycoon Ye Jianming and other Beijing figures, began receiving a transfusion of cash. He shared more than $1 million with his uncle James Biden for consulting services. The two of them went on a $100,000 shopping spree, compliments of the Chinese, the Senate report said.
The October 2018 CPA emails showed that Hunter Biden told the tax preparer that some of the money he received was in the form of loans.
The CPA said Owasco received about $550,000 from Burisma and paid about half that amount to “I believe someone named ‘Devon,’” the accountant wrote. “I am not sure of the payee. Is this the amount you are referring to? … Filing the returns will stop further late filing penalties from accruing.”
The email was among the cache of messages contained in Hunter Biden‘s laptop computer he dropped off at a repair shop in Wilmington, Delaware, and never retrieved. The shop owner supplied the contents to the FBI under a grand jury subpoena and then to Rudolph W. Giuliani, President Trump’s attorney.
The Washington Times obtained a hard drive copy.
NBC News first reported on another tax-related email since obtained by The Times.
In January 2017, Hunter Biden relied on another business associate, Eric D. Schwerin, to do his taxes. Mr. Schwerin ran the day-to-day operations of the investment firm Rosemont Seneca Advisors in Washington.
Mr. Schwerin told Mr. Biden that he reported income of $833,614 in 2013, $847,328 in 2014 (his first year at Burisma and his first payments from the Moscow oligarch) and $2,478,208 in 2015.
Mr. Schwerin said Mr. Biden needed to amend his 2014 tax returns because he neglected to report about $400,000 from Burisma, taking his income that year to $1,247,328, not the reported $847,328.
Mr. Schwerin said that in 2015, of the nearly $2.5 million in income, $1.188 million went to a joint venture with Archer called Rosemont Seneca Bohai.
“You didn’t receive this in cash and it is in reality ‘phantom income,’” he told Mr. Biden. “So, of the approximately $2.5 million in income you never really received almost $1.2m of it.”
It appears Mr. Biden deducted expenses in 2014 and 2015 for the $200,000 renovation of his home.
Mr. Schwerin said he was still working on the 2016 tax return. Mr. Biden would at the least claim $1,295,000 in income from Owasco, which received money from Burisma and a Romanian client; and $216,000 from the D.C. law firm Boies Schiller.
An email shows Mr. Biden responded to the January 2017 message two years later, telling Mr. Schwerin to obtain his 2018 return from his accountant.
Mr. Schwerin does not mention Chinese proceeds for 2017. That was the year Hunter Biden‘s four visits to China, one with his father on Air Force 2, started to pay dividends.
“Hunter Biden and Devon Archer engaged in numerous financial transactions with Chinese nationals who had deep connections to the Communist Chinese government,” said the Sept. 23 Senate Republican report by Finance Committee Chairman Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican, and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Ron Johnson, Wisconsin Republican.
“There exists a vast web of corporate connections and financial transactions between and among the Biden family and Chinese nationals,” the senators wrote.
Hunter Biden wanted money for his various investment companies — a collection he himself called “myriad” — and struck gold with Mr. Ye, chairman of the state-connected China Energy Fund Co.
The first major CEFC money transfers found by Senate investigators came in August 2017: a $5 million wire to Hudson West III, a now-defunct investment company that began sending the money to Mr. Biden’s Owasco firm. Described as consulting fees, the payments reached $4.79 million in just over one year.
Hudson West III and other Hudson West entities were set up by Ye associate Gongwen Dong. Together, the firms received incoming wires totaling more than $100 million.
During this time, Hunter Biden sent $1.398 million to his father’s brother, James, and his Lion Hall Group consulting firm in Philadelphia.
Laptop emails show Hunter Biden was paying James Biden nearly $1million annually as a retainer.
But there would be no more CEFC deals. In March 2018, Mr. Ye was arrested by Chinese authorities and disappeared from public sight. His CEFC operation went bankrupt.
Hunter Biden last wrote to his Rosemont office manager: “Haven’t noticed Katie my business partner is now a prisoner on death row in China. Somehow the directive of not cutting Devon half my Burisma pay never happened I pay more alimony than single divorce in the east coast including NYC. You pay more alimony just b/c I told her I would give her everything than Ron Perlman who is worth 6 billion dollars. So there’s not much income coming through these days.”
In March 2019, while on a road trip, Hunter Biden emailed a business associate: “Buddy do you have cash app to send me … $100 bucks until wire goes. I have no money for gas and im literally stuck at a rest stop on 95 on my way from Boston to DC.”
• Rowan Scarborough can be reached at email@example.com.
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