Over the past few weeks, the US attorney’s office in Delaware has sought information and grand-jury testimony about money Hunter Biden received from Burisma Holdings, a natural gas company based in Ukraine, and how Biden used that money.
According to people familiar with the matter who spoke to the Wall Street Journal, prosecutors also questioned at least one associate of Biden’s on his drug and alcohol use, spending habits, and mental state in 2018. Prosecutors typically attempt to get such information on the record to undermine its use as a defense during a trial.
“It doesn’t necessarily mean an indictment is imminent, but it is indicative of trying to lock in testimony with an eye towards a potential trial someday,” said former federal tax prosecutor Matt Mueller.
Prosecutors launched a wide-ranging investigation into Biden’s business dealings over the past year. They’re closely examining whether he violated tax and campaign laws, including those concerning lobbying foreign governments, through his business dealings in Ukraine, China, and Kazakhstan.
The Burisma payments are of particular interest, according to people familiar with the investigation. Biden was paid $50,000 a month as a member of the Burisma board between 2014 and 2019. His presence on the board was brought up in multiple requests from the company hoping to secure meetings with the State Department.