House Republicans are demanding answers about the former FBI informant accused of lying about the Biden family and alleged bribery after the shocking revelation in which the whistleblower admitted he received information from Russian intelligence agents. But Republican lawmakers deny that he has explosive implications for their impeachment inquiry into the president.
Last week, special prosecutor David Weiss accused former FBI informant Alexander Smirnov, 43, of lying about President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden accepting $5 million in bribes from the Ukrainian energy company Burisma.
In an explosive new presentation on Tuesday, Prosecutors stated that Smirnov admitted after his arrest “that officials associated with Russian intelligence were involved in spreading a story about Businessman 1,” referring to Hunter Biden, President Biden’s son.
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Republicans had made the FD-1023 form in which Smirnov made the false claims the center of their case to remove the sitting president.
Republicans want to know why the FBI and DOJ used the informant, why they paid him six figures, and why the DOJ ‘sat by serious allegations from the informant whom the FBI considered highly credible for years before investigating the allegations’ .
House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer said in a recent interview that “the math continues to get worse” in Republicans’ impeachment inquiry into President Biden, indicating that the likelihood of a voting has decreased.
According to Tuesday’s document, “Smirnov lied to his FBI handler after a 10-year relationship in which the two spoke almost every day.”
Responding to new details about Russian intelligence, Rep. William Timmons, R-S.C., told reporters Wednesday “we’ll figure it out.”
Timmons stated that it “has no impact on the enormous amount of circumstantial evidence we have that Hunter and Jim Biden were selling Joe Biden’s policy decisions for millions of dollars.”
“So if the confidential human source lied to the FBI, I don’t know, we’ll find out,” he said.
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, also responded, questioning why the FBI was paying Smirnov since 2010 as a “trusted source.” He stated that the fact that Smirnov was accused of lying does not change the facts.
Special counsel David Weiss accused a former FBI informant of lying about President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden accepting a $5 million bribe from Ukrainian energy company Burisma.
The document went on to say that the “false information” Smirnov provided was not “trivial” because it “targeted the presumptive candidate of one of the two major political parties,” referring to Joe Biden.
Rp. Raskin said the impeachment inquiry “essentially ended” after a document showed Smirnov received a story about Hunter Biden from Russian intelligence.
Democrats have called for an end to the impeachment inquiry.
“The impeachment inquiry essentially ended yesterday in substance, if not form, with the explosive revelation that Mr. Smirnov’s allegations about Ukrainian Burisma payments to Joe Biden were fabricated in conjunction with Russian intelligence agents,” he said Wednesday. Ranking Member Jamie Raskin, D-M.D. .
“It appears that all of this is not only patently false and fraudulent, but also the product of Russian disinformation and propaganda,” Raskin added.
Smirnov was arrested last week at Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas after arriving in the United States from abroad. He is accused of making a false statement and creating a false record of statements he made to the FBI in 2020.
The indictment alleges that Smirnov had contact with executives of the Ukrainian energy company Burisma in 2017, after the end of the Obama-Biden administration and after Ukraine’s then-prosecutor general was fired in February 2016 when Biden “had no ability to influencing American politics and after Ukraine’s attorney general was fired in February 2016.
The indictment alleges that Smirnov turned his routine business contacts with Burisma in 2017 into bribery allegations against Biden after expressing bias against Biden and his presidential bid.
In 2020, the indictment alleged that Smirnov provided false information about Biden and Hunter after Biden became a presidential candidate. At that time, Smirnov reported two meetings around 2015 and/or 2016.
Smirnov alleges He falsely claimed that during meetings, executives associated with Burisma admitted to him that they hired Hunter to “protect us, through his father, from all kinds of problems.”
He also claimed that they had specifically paid $5 million each to Biden and Hunter while Biden was still in office for Hunter to “take care of all of those matters through his father,” in reference to a criminal investigation he was conducting. corporal the then Ukrainian prosecutor. general in Burisma.
According to the indictment, the facts that Smirnov reported in 2020 were a fabrication.
When Smirnov was interviewed by the FBI in September 2023, the prosecution alleges that he repeated some of his false claims, changed his story with other claims, and “promoted a new false narrative after saying he met with Russian officials.”
Hunter Biden Named to Burisma Holdings Board of Directors
In 2020, Ukrainian authorities said they had intercepted a $6 million bribery attempt to drop a criminal investigation against the head of the natural gas company Burisma, where Joe Biden’s son once held a board seat. .
Tuesday’s filing detailed that law enforcement officials were aware of Smirnov’s “contact with officials affiliated with Russian intelligence” because Smirnov himself reported several of those contacts to his FBI handler.
“These contacts are extensive and extremely recent, and Smirnov intended to meet with one of these officials on his next trip abroad,” prosecutors said in Tuesday’s filing.
He also claimed that Smirnov’s planned trip from the United States last Friday, just days after his arrest, was aimed at meeting with Russian intelligence officials, among others.
The presentation included details about Smirnov’s contact with the Russians to his handler. Smirnov revealed that ‘Russian official 1’ was the son of a ‘former high-ranking Russian government official’ and described him as having ‘ties to a particular Russian intelligence service.’
“Russian official 2” is described as a “high-ranking member of a specific Russian foreign intelligence service.”
In December 2023, Smirnov told his handler about a recent trip abroad where he met with ‘Russian Officer 1’, where that contact made a claim about a ‘Russian Officer 4’ who was supposedly running an intelligence operation. in a ‘club’ at a particular hotel. .
‘Smirnov told FBI Handler that the Russian Intelligence Service intercepted cell phone calls made by hotel guests. “The Russian Intelligence Service intercepted several calls made by prominent people in the United States that the Russian government could use as a ‘kompromat’ in the 2024 elections, depending on who the candidates will be,” according to Tuesday’s document.
The charges against Smirnov undermine Republican bribery allegations and claim that Biden was benefiting financially from his son’s business dealings in Ukraine.
Joe Biden on Friday demanded that impeachment proceedings against him be dropped after a key witness was accused of fabricating a multimillion-dollar bribery scheme involving the president, his son Hunter and a Ukrainian energy company.
Following Smirnov’s arrest, House Oversight Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., attempted to downplay the allegation, saying the informant was just one part of a complex money trail involving the Bidens and the foreigners who are working to unravel.
The president demanded that the impeachment proceedings against him be abandoned after Smirnov’s arrest.