The U.S. Department of Justice is reportedly investigating the work of a lobbying firm that worked with Ukrainian gas company Burisma while President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, was collecting money for a no-show job on Burisma’s board.
The firm, Blue Star Strategies, has deep ties to the swampy Clinton administration as well as to Hunter Biden. The investigation is part of the Justice Department’s plan to look into foreign governments’ trying to influence U.S. politics through secret lobbying operations. If you recall, one big Hillary donor got busted secretly funneling foreign money to Hillary’s campaign. Once Trump won, the same guy tried to sneak foreign money into Trump’s inaugural fund.
This is a bipartisan swamp thing and while much of the feds investigations have centered around Republicans close to former President Donald Trump, like lawyer Rudy Giuliani, this new report (hopefully) shows that the Department of Justice is not playing politics on this very serious issue.
The Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office is involved in the probe along with lawyers in the National Security Division at DOJ’s Washington headquarters. A grand jury has been active in the probe according to the report. Remember, the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office is also investigating Hunter Biden for possible tax violations. The report claims that Hunter Biden is not a target of the new investigation but as Burisma’s most connected guy in DC one does wonder if that won’t change.
One focus of the investigation is whether the firm failed to comply with disclosure requirements under the Foreign Agents Registration Act, a law that requires Americans to disclose lobbying and public affairs work for foreign officials and political parties.
There is no indication that Hunter Biden is a target of the investigation into Blue Star. Karen Tramontano, one of Blue Star’s co-founders, testified that Hunter Biden did not direct any of the firm’s work for Burisma.
The report details the company has deep connections to the Dem establishment. It says:
Blue Star Strategies is a Washington lobbying and public affairs firm that also has offices in Brussels, Buenos Aires, Paris and Vienna. Its co-founders, Tramontano and Sally Painter, are well-connected longtime Washington operatives and alums of the Clinton administration.
…According to Congressional testimony, Blue Star’s co-founders met with U.S. government officials as part of their work for Burisma.
They had not disclosed to the Justice Department that Burisma was a client, which could potentially put them in legal jeopardy, said a former top DOJ official.
Tramontano testified that when she first discussed Burisma with Archer, she did not know Hunter Biden was also on its board.
She also said that she didn’t recall when she specifically learned he was on the board, and that he had been an acquaintance of hers before her firm took on the energy company as a client.
Tramontano also testified to Congressional investigators that Burisma first retained her firm to find out why Pyatt had criticized the company and whether his criticisms represented the views of the State Department.
The firm’s co-founders did mention that Hunter Biden was on their client’s board when seeking a meeting at the State Department, as The Wall Street Journal reported. They “mentioned him again during the meeting as part of an effort to improve Burisma’s image in Washington,” according to the paper.
Tramontano said that she met with multiple U.S. officials as part of her work with the company, including Pyatt and Cathy Novelli, a State official focused on energy.
From The Hill:
Burisma’s founder was under investigation by then-prosecutor general Viktor Shokin, who the U.S., United Kingdom and other Western governments argued had failed to rein in corruption in the country.
The U.S., while Biden was vice president, threatened to withhold approximately $1 billion in loan guarantees if Shokin was not replaced as prosecutor general.
Hunter Biden in April defended his decision to serve on the Burisma board but said he would not do it again following the repeated attacks and scrutiny from Trump and his allies.
Trump pressed Ukrainian officials to help look at Burisma’s relationship with Hunter Biden, saying in a phone call that the U.S. would deny promised aid to the country unless there was a probe.