Hunter Biden requests new trial after conviction in gun case

The president's son was convicted earlier this month on three felony charges.

ByLucien Bruggeman ABCNews logo
Monday, June 24, 2024
Hunter Biden conviction likely to have low impact on election: Experts
"I don't think the verdict will materially impact the race," a Republican said.

Nearly two weeks after President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden was convicted on three felony gun counts, he is waging a long-shot bid to fight that outcome.

Attorneys for Hunter Biden requested a new trial in court papers filed Monday, arguing that his "convictions should be vacated" because the trial commenced before a circuit court formally issued a mandate denying his appeal -- a technical argument disputing not the merits of the case, but a procedural claim.

The video is from a previous report.

"Here, no mandate was issued during the trial or even now," attorneys for Biden wrote. "Consequently, the conviction must be vacated."

The younger Biden was found guilty earlier this month on two counts of making false statements for saying on a federal form that he was not addicted to drugs at the time he purchased a Colt Cobra 38SPL revolver in October 2018, and a third count of illegally obtaining the firearm while addicted to drugs.

Attorneys for Hunter Biden also argued in a separate filing Monday that the Supreme Court's decision this week in U.S. v. Rahimi, which upheld a longstanding federal ban on firearms for people under domestic violence restraining orders, supported their motion for an acquittal or, "at a minimum," a new trial.

Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in that decision that when "an individual poses a credible threat to the physical safety of an intimate partner, that individual may -- consistent with the Second Amendment -- be banned from possessing firearms while the order is in effect."

Because Hunter Biden never acted violently or misused his gun, his attorneys argued on Monday, his Second Amendment right to bear arms ought to remain intact.

"Here, the jury did not find Mr. Biden ever terrorized anyone with a gun in public , or anywhere else, or used it dangerously in any way," attorneys for Biden wrote. "That requires Mr. Biden's acquittal."

Hunter Biden's legal team also reprised a question they raised at trial about how long after a drug addict stops using drugs before they can purchase a firearm -- perhaps laying the foundation for yet another appeal.

"Where is this line that separates not only what is legal from what is illegal, but where the exercise of a constitutionally protected right becomes a felony? How does a person have fair notice of when he or she is allowed to possess a firearm if they used a prohibited substance a day, a week, a month or, as the Special Counsel argued, years before? This Court has not said," they argued.