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Unmasking the Delay in Indictment Over Burisma Allegations

Was there a Lack of Due Diligence in the Bidens-Burisma Probe?

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The recent indictment of an FBI informant named Alexander Smirnov by the Department of Justice (DOJ) leaves a myriad of questions lingering in its wake. Concerning an alleged bribery quagmire involving the Ukranian energy company Burisma, Hunter Biden, and father Joe Biden, Smirnov declared in 2020 that both Bidens received a hefty sum of $5 million each to wield their political clout in defending the concerns of Burisma.

The indictment released on Thursday asserts that Smirnov misled the FBI, a claim brought forth by the special counsel, spearheaded by David Weiss. Regardless of whether Smirnov spoke truthfully to the FBI or not, this indictment – along with its timing – begs the question of how federal investigators approached and scrutinized the information disseminated by Smirnov.

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With Smirnov deemed less credible, the allegations still foster some significant interrogations. According to the official indictment, Smirnov’s contact with Burisma executives began only in 2017, a time period post-Joe Biden’s vice presidency and the termination of the Ukranian agent investigating Burisma. Hence, the opportunity for Smirnov to engage with the Burisma executives and discuss matters involving the Bidens during 2015 and 2016 raises doubts.

The FBI recorded the 2020 allegations made by Smirnov on an FD-1023 form – a document designed to encapsulate the information shared by a confidential human source (CHS). It is key to note that this document doesn’t pass judgment on the authenticity of the information, and merely serves as a synopsis of the informant’s statements. The FD-1023 involving Smirnov wasn’t brought into conversation until September 27, 2023, as delineated in the indictment.

Scott Brady, the Former U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, shared some illuminating insights before the House Judiciary Committee in October 2023. According to him, U.S. Attorney Weiss was knowledgeable about the contents of the FD-1023 since 2020, years ahead of the ‘sweetheart’ deal proposed to Hunter Biden by the DOJ, encompassing gun charges and tax.

A question thus arises regarding the delay in further investigation of the explosive FD-1023 allegations. In June 2020, the FBI acquired the FD-1023, which claimed that Burisma enlisted Hunter Biden on the firm’s board with the overt purpose of employing his influence through his father to avoid potential issues. Curiously, with such incendiary accusations contained within the FD-1023, why was there such a significant delay in the attempts of the FBI or other federal investigators to scrutinize the veracity of these insinuations and deduce their potential falsehood?

The indictment sparked controversy of the additional delay in the verification and debunking of Smirnov’s claims. Especially considering he pointed at ex-Vice President and then-presidential candidate Joe Biden, accusing him of receiving bribes from foreign elites to manipulate the U.S. policy regarding Ukraine. This tardiness in action calls into question procedural transparency.

So, how did the FBI judge the credibility of Smirnov, their CHS? As per Brady’s testimony, the agency maintained a belief in Smirnov’s high credibility over several years. They deemed the information he relayed as not only credible but also of significant value. As a token of gratitude for his intel, he was even allowed certain criminal liberties.

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However, the FBI’s management of human sources has been under fire amidst a history of controversial missteps. With incidents as serious as turning a blind eye toward criminal activities committed by the sources, criticism against the agency’s accountability and control over allocated taxpayer funds has been rampant.

The indictment’s implications on the broader Joe Biden investigation remain ambiguous. Following the allegations contained in the Weiss indictment, Democrats rushed to use it as evidence insisting that the probe into Joe Biden’s alleged connection to his son’s professional affairs should be discontinued.

Joe Biden publicly described the investigation questioning his conduct as a baseless endeavor that ought to be terminated, during a press conference on a certain Friday. The indictment also sparked responses from other key members within the Democratic party. For instance, Jamie Raskin, a Democratic representative from Maryland and member of the House Oversight and Accountability Committee, regarded the Weiss’s investigation as yet another instance debunking the central conspiracy theory uniting the Ukraine-Burisma narrative.

Despite the indictment that suggests Smirnov might have purposely misled the FBI, the probe into the Bidens relies on a vast treasury of circumstantial evidence that extends beyond the lone FD-1023. Consequently, this Thursday indictment does not necessarily challenge the validity of the contents discovered on Hunter Biden’s laptop.

Nor does it cast doubt on the testimonials delivered by multiple ex-associates of Hunter Biden. The intricate network of shell companies, as well as the wire transfers that congressional investigators have tracked, isn’t dismissed either. Also, the scope of any potential inclusion of Joe Biden in his son’s business interactions with foreign entities – namely, nations like China, Romania, and Kazakhstan — remains unaffected.

The indictment, therefore, raises questions rather than providing closure. If Smirnov was misleading the FBI, why did it take so long to uncover this? Why was there such a significant delay in investigating the very serious allegations put forth in the FD-1023? And why was Smirnov considered highly credible for so long if this was the case?

The implications of this investigation extend far beyond partisan politics. They demand an earnest reflection on legislative oversight, investigational efficacy, and pursuit of transparency. In order to preserve the integrity of political offices and investigation bodies, it’s essential to swiftly act in response to allegations, maintaining procedural transparency and truth.

Lastly, at the time of reporting, the Department of Justice did not provide any statements on the indictment or comment on behalf of special counsel Weiss. Thus, in the current stage, we’re left with surmises, guesses, and unanswered questions which can only be clarified as the situation unfolds further.

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