Probe led by Del. US District Attorney leads to informant’s indictment over false claims involving the Bidens


Delaware U.S. District Attorney David Weiss announced the indictment of an FBI informer who passed along false claims regarding Hunter Biden and President Joe Biden

On Thursday, a two-count indictment was returned by a federal grand jury in the Central District of California charging Alexander Smirnov, 43,  with making a false statement.

Weiss made the announcement of the indictment. A Delaware case from Weiss involving income tax charges against Hunter Biden has been moved to California, after a plea deal fell apart. Weiss gainied special prosecutor status so he could deal with cases in other states.

On Feb. 14, a federal grand jury returned the indictment and Smirnov was arrested at the Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas, after arriving from overseas. .

 As alleged in the indictment, despite repeated warnings that he must provide truthful information to the FBI and that he must not fabricate evidence, Smirnov provided false information to the FBI regarding the younger Ben.

The indictment alleges that in March 2017, Smirnov reported to an FBI agent that he had had a phone call with the owner of Ukrainian conglomerate Burisma Holdings, Limited concerning Burisma’s interest in acquiring a U.S. company and making an initial public offering on a U.S.-based stock exchange.  In reporting that conversation to the FBI agent, Smirnov also noted that Businessperson 1 (Hunter Biden) was a member of Burisma’s Board, a fact that was publicly known.  The indictment alleges that Smirnov provided no further information.

Three years later, the indictment alleged that Smirnov reported, for the first time, two meetings in 2015 and/or 2016.  As alleged in the indictment, Smirnov falsely claimed that during these meetings, executives associated with Burisma, admitted to him that they hired Businessperson 1 to “protect us, through his dad, from all kinds of problems,” and later that they had specifically paid $5 million each to Public Official 1 (Joe Biden) and Businessperson 1, when Public Official 1 was still in office, so that “[Businessperson 1] will take care of all those issues through his dad,” referring to a criminal investigation being conducted by then-Ukrainian Prosecutor General into Burisma and to “deal with [the then-Ukrainian Prosecutor General].” 

As alleged in the indictment, the events that Smirnov first reported to the FBI Agent in June 2020 were fabrications.  Prosecutors said the defendant had contact with executives from Burisma in 2017, after the end of the administration when Public Official 1 had no ability to influence U.S. policy and after the Ukrainian Prosecutor General had been fired in February 2016.

As further alleged in the indictment, when he was interviewed by FBI agents in September 2023, Smirnov repeated some of his claims, changed his story, and promoted a new false narrative after he said he met with Russian officials.

The $5 million payment has been a key element of a Republican-led Congressional investigations into the Bidens.

If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison.  Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less.