James Biden, brother to current United States President, found himself in the midst of an FBI inquiry surrounding an eminent trial attorney based out of Mississippi, during the end of the 20th century. This attorney, named Richard Scruggs, reportedly paid a handsome $100,000 towards a consultation firm that was under the ownership of James and Sara Biden, as narrated by a Sunday publication.
The details emerge that Scruggs was in the process of garnering support for impending tobacco legislature that Congress was up to in 1998. For this task, he took to the expertise of the DC firm owned by the Biden duo, according to reports from the Washington Post.
However, it is noteworthy that during the unfolding events, none of the Biden brothers – James, aged 74, and now President Joe Biden, aged 81, faced any allegations of grievous criminal misconduct. Scruggs, on the other hand, later faced incarceration pertaining to another bribery controversy.
Scruggs was in the pursuit of a deal enabling him to compel tobacco firms to relinquish billions of dollars. This was part of a legal action accusing these companies of suppressing data about the addictive nature of their offerings. To put such a settlement into place, it was crucial for the Congress to suspend specific antitrust protocols.
Back in 1997, Joe Biden, who, at the time, held a prestigious position in the Senate Judiciary Committee as the ranking member, initially conveyed hesitation about the proposed settlement, dubbing it ‘not yet a good deal’.
Over time, however, he gauged the situation differently. The then-Senator ultimately evolved into one of the most influential supporters of the legislative endeavor under consideration. Irrespective of this change in stance, the bill did not manage to procure necessary endorsements from the Congress.
Throughout this period, Scruggs provided numerous pays of $10,000 to the Bidens’ firm, Lion Hall, spanning across a year as he sought support from the then-Senator of Delaware. Although Scruggs himself could not confirm if James Biden had persuaded his brother to endorse the bill, he told The Washington Post, ‘I hope he did.’
In response, an attorney representing James Biden confirmed that James’ professional duties never necessitated discourse with his brother, or the need to facilitate access to him. However, the consulting firm Lion Hall has piqued interest in ongoing Republican congressional investigations into whether James Biden used it as a mean to transfer funds in favor of his family.
Allegations have arisen from House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) involving a $40,000 check from James to Joe in 2017, classified as a ‘loan repayment’. This is claimed to have been ‘laundered’ from China’s government-associated CEFC. The White House has strongly rebutted such assertions, pointing to banking records as evidence of a genuine loan transaction between the brothers.
In the recent past, a House comprising a GOP majority validated the launch of an impeachment inquiry into Biden concerning these alleged associations. Discussions are underway among the Republicans considering the possibility of serving Hunter Biden with contempt charges, a decision that would ultimately rest with the Justice Department.
Meanwhile, post the fiasco concerning the tobacco bill, FBI authorities initiated an investigation into Scruggs relating to a supposed bribery agenda that involved directing $40,000 towards a local judge. During this course of investigation, the FBI recorded several calls, including those involving James Biden.
James Biden at this time had plans to establish a firm with partners from Scruggs. While he himself was not indicted in connection with the bribery scheme, Scruggs and some associates eventually did serve jail time. Lawyers acting for Biden’s brother maintain that he was completely unaware of any such plan and any initial efforts towards a partnership ‘never got off the ground.’
Richard Scruggs and James Biden shared a close relationship, which is attributed to Steve Patterson, an aide to former Sen. John Stennis (D-Miss.), thereby embroiling Biden’s brother further into the saga, as reported by the Washington Post.