DOJ concealing info on probe into whether Hunter Biden violated ‘debauchery’ law, watchdog says

A government watchdog group filed suit in Delaware federal court this week, seeking to compel the Justice Department to produce records that may determine whether Hunter Biden should be further investigated under a 1910 law relating to “prostitution or debauchery.”

The Heritage Foundation’s Oversight Project petitioned the same Wilmington bench where Biden was found guilty on gun charges this month, contending that there is a significant amount of evidence the first son was being probed on Mann Act grounds.

The law, stemming from a time when prostitution was more prevalent in urban areas, states it is a felony to “knowingly transport… in interstate or foreign commerce… any woman or girl for the purpose of prostitution or debauchery.”

The legal brief, obtained by Fox News Digital, includes part of a 2023 interview transcript from IRS whistleblower Joseph Ziegler before the House Ways & Means Committee.

Ziegler recounted efforts by the Justice Department to assess potential Mann Act violations, speaking of a “West Coast assistant” of Biden’s, whom “we knew … to also be in the prostitution world or believed to be in the prostitution world – and he deducted expenses related to her.”

An unnamed lawmaker then asks about Biden “paying for the travel of an individual to fly out to California or wherever,” to which Ziegler responds, “Or Boston or wherever he was at. [Washington, D.C.] I think one of them – he flew someone for the night.”

Ziegler said he understood the Justice Department to be “compiling” potential violation allegations that had been referred to them but that he did not know the ultimate outcome.

Oversight Project attorney Kyle Brosnan told Fox News Digital in a Thursday interview he believes the Justice Department, therefore, has the information and that it should be made publicly available.

Brosnan said the Oversight Project seeks records relating to Ziegler’s testimony, any communications with the probation office regarding the Mann Act, as well as “victim”-related inquiries.

“If you sort of peel back the layers of the onion, it’s absurd, because there is an overwhelming amount of information that already shows these records exist. [They’re] found on the Hunter Biden laptop, which was entered into evidence in his criminal case in Delaware,” Brosnan said.


The Justice Department instead issued a “Glomar response” to inquiries for information on the matter – a legal maneuver that provides for a justified exception to the rule that parties must confirm or deny the existence of information sought through legal requests.

In September, Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., and James Comer, R-Ky., wrote a letter to the Justice Department after IRS whistleblowers’ testimony, saying the witnesses indicated the agency “compiled a list of potential victims” in relation to a Mann Act probe into the first son.

“These women may be victims under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act and may also be afforded mandatory restitution pursuant to the Mandatory Victim Restitution Act,” Greene and Comer wrote.

In light of the laptop’s contents and Congress’ findings, Brosnan said, the Justice Department’s Glomar response was “completely inappropriate” and that it could give credence to claims the department “pulled punches” in Biden’s prosecution.

Mike Howell, executive director of the Oversight Project, told Fox News Digital in a statement that while “you shouldn’t transport prostitutes within state lines, it is clearly a federal offense to transport them across state lines.”

“This is another criminal offense that Hunter has not been charged for – one that we are forcing the Department of Justice to admit that they are tracking as well as refusing to prosecute.”

The Justice Department, White House and the office of Biden attorney Abbe Lowell did not respond to requests for comment.

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