Hunter Biden pleads not guilty to three federal gun charges filed after his plea deal collapsed

FILE - President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden leaves after a court appearance, July 26, 2023, in Wilmington, Del. Hunter Biden has filed a lawsuit against the Internal Revenue Service, arguing that two agents violated his right to privacy when they publicly aired his tax information as they pressed claims that a federal investigation into him had been improperly handled. The lawsuit filed Monday says that his personal tax details shared during congressional hearings and interviews was not allowed by whistleblower protections. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)

WILMINGTON, Del. — Hunter Biden pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to three federal firearms charges filed after his earlier deal imploded, setting the case on a track toward a possible trial in 2024 while his father is campaigning for reelection.

President Joe Biden’s son has been charged with lying about his drug use in October 2018 on a form to buy a gun that he kept for about 11 days. He could face up to 25 years in prison if convicted. When asked by Magistrate Judge Christopher Burke if he understood the charges against him, he said, “Yes, Your Honor.”

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His lawyer Abbe Lowell said in court he plans to file a motion to dismiss the charges, challenging their constitutionality.

“Mr. Biden pleads not guilty to the three counts that have been brought against him,” Lowell said to the judge.

Hunter Biden has acknowledged struggling with an addiction to crack cocaine during that period in 2018, but his lawyers have said he didn’t break the law. Cases like this, against drug users accused of having guns, are rare, and an appeals court has found the underlying statute violates the Second Amendment under new Supreme Court standards.

On Tuesday, the judge noted Hunter Biden had been repeatedly tested for drugs and is negative.

Hunter Biden’s attorneys are suggesting that prosecutors bowed to pressure by Republicans, who have insisted the Democratic president’s son got a sweetheart deal, and that the charges were the result of political pressure.

“President Trump and his MAGA allies” have forced “the Justice Department to ignore the law and deviate from its policies in cases like this one,” Lowell said.

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