Devon Archer’s Testimony Could Deepen the Hunter Biden Investigation
When Devon Archer sits down on Monday with the House Oversight Committee, the Hunter Biden investigation could enter a new and more significant phase.
That’s because Archer, a former business partner of Hunter Biden’s and a former friend to the family, is expected to testify about the extent of President Joe Biden’s involvement in his son’s foreign business dealings, potentially roping the president more deeply into a scandal he has thus far studiously avoided.
Archer’s Crucial Testimony
Archer will be the closest business associate of Hunter Biden’s to speak with Congress to date. The two served together on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company, and handled a range of other business deals together through Rosemont Seneca, their investment firm.
While other witnesses have discussed the evidence that Hunter Biden engaged in illegal activity during his time working for overseas companies, Archer’s testimony could be the first that directly links Joe Biden to the lobbying his son did.
And two IRS whistleblowers have said Hunter Biden avoided paying taxes on his income from Burisma starting in 2014 through a scheme he and Archer arranged together.
Archer’s attorney told the Washington Free Beacon last week that his client has already spoken with federal investigators and a grand jury looking into the Biden family.
Archer is expected to tell congressional investigators that Hunter Biden frequently put his father on speakerphone to talk to Burisma officials at the height of his lobbying work for the Ukrainian company.
At the time, Hunter Biden and Archer were working to stop an investigation into Mykola Zlochevsky, the head of Burisma, that was being led by Viktor Shokin, then the top prosecutor in Ukraine.
Joe Biden publicly called for Shokin to be fired and privately threatened to withhold U.S. aid from Ukraine if he was not. The timing of the calls Hunter Biden facilitated between his father and the Burisma executives, Archer is expected to say, lines up with actions Joe Biden took that benefitted Zlochevsky and Burisma directly.
Gary Shapley, an IRS whistleblower, testified that Archer established a shell company through which Hunter Biden routed his income from Burisma starting in 2014. At that time, Hunter Biden was earning $83,000 per month from the Ukrainian energy company.
Hunter Biden attempted to claim the money as a loan, avoiding the obligation to pay any taxes on the income. But Archer claimed the money as a business expense, Shapley testified, indicating that there was never an expectation that Hunter Biden intended to repay the money.
The statute of limitations on the 2014 tax year has expired, meaning prosecutors cannot pursue any charges related to the criminal activity they may suspect took place.
However, Archer’s knowledge of the way Hunter Biden structured his complicated web of shell companies, including Rosemont Seneca, could inform investigators’ understanding of steps Hunter Biden took in subsequent years to hide his income from the government.
Prosecutors said in court on Wednesday that Hunter Biden willfully avoided paying taxes in 2017 and 2018, and that even when he was forced to file tax returns by a child support lawsuit, he lied to his accountants about personal expenses he’d masked as business expenses in order to lower his tax bill.
Archer has struggled with his own legal troubles.
He faces a criminal conviction in an unrelated bond fraud case for which he was sentenced to a year in prison. His checkered past caused Joseph Ziegler, one of the two IRS whistleblowers who have come forward to Congress, to mention the credibility problems investigators considered when looking into the unusual payment structure of Hunter Biden’s Burisma income.
Although the president’s son was not implicated in Archer’s bond fraud case, Hunter Biden’s emails suggest the Justice Department was interested in speaking to him about his partner’s business.
Hunter Biden’s attorneys appear to have drafted a letter to the Justice Department and the Securities & Exchange Commission in 2016 as Archer faced an imminent indictment alongside six co-defendants – one of whom, emails show, Hunter Biden also knew.
Another email from 2016 appears to contain the questions investigators had for Hunter Biden about Archer, which included scrutiny of Rosemont Seneca’s structure.
Archer is also expected to testify about at least two dinners Hunter Biden arranged for his foreign business partners to meet with Joe Biden in person, both of which occurred while Joe Biden was still vice president.
One of the meetings involved Burisma business.
Because Archer also served on the Burisma board and helped funnel Hunter Biden’s Burisma earnings to him, Archer could also serve as a key witness in determining the authenticity of a bribery allegation against Hunter Biden and his father.
A confidential human source that the FBI regarded as highly credible told the bureau in 2020 that, in 2015 and 2016, Zlochevsky, the head of Burisma, privately indicated he had paid both Hunter and Joe Biden millions of dollars to shut down the Ukrainian investigation of their company.
Zlochevsky had boasted that it would take investigators a decade to find the money he’d sent to Joe Biden thanks to his network of bank accounts and companies, the source told the FBI.
The explosive allegation, memorialized in an FBI document that has since been made public, fits with much of the existing evidence about the case.
The Biden family did collect payments through a tangled mess of companies and accounts, as the source said. The Biden family did work to help shield Zlochevsky from legal trouble, as the source said Zlochevsky had asked them to do. And Burisma did appear to partner with a North American energy company that had an office in Texas, as the source said.
Zlochevsky had apparently explained that part of what Burisma wanted from the Biden family were the connections to U.S. energy businesses that Burisma could ultimately buy and use to raise investments in the U.S.; the source had recalled that Zlochevsky mentioned a gas company in Texas, but not what it was called.
According to a 2016 article in the Kyiv Post, Burisma bought a large stake in a gas company with an office in Houston.
" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."