Hunter Biden to be arraigned on tax charges in January

Hunter Biden is scheduled to be arraigned on the recently filed tax charges against him in federal court on Jan. 11, court documents filed on Monday show.

The president’s son is expected to make his initial appearance on the nine tax-related charges he was hit with this month before Magistrate Judge Alka Sagar in Los Angeles, according to the Central District of California’s calendar.

Sagar was appointed as a magistrate judge in 2013, and was the first female Indian American federal judge in the nation.

Prior to her appointment, Sagar served as an assistant U.S. attorney in Los Angeles, where she held the positions of deputy chief in the Major Frauds Section and deputy chief in the Major Crimes Section, handling complex fraud and criminal tax prosecutions. Before that, she was an associate at two Los Angeles law firms.

Sagar’s involvement in Biden’s case is limited to his initial court appearance. U.S. District Judge Mark Scarsi, a Trump nominee who was confirmed by the Senate in September of 2020, will oversee the rest of the case. He was randomly assigned to be the presiding judge.

The date of the arraignment in California is the same as the scheduled closing arguments in the $250 million civil fraud case against Donald Trump in New York, where the former president has denied wrongdoing.

Biden, 53, is facing three felony and six misdemeanor counts. The maximum penalty he could face if convicted is 17 years in prison, according to Weiss’ office. He will formally enter his plea at the arraignment.

Biden’s attorney, Abbe Lowell, has alleged the prosecution being overseen by Weiss, a Trump nominee, is politically motivated.

Representatives for Biden and the special counsel’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment Monday night.

“According to the indictment, Hunter Biden engaged in a four-year scheme in which he chose not to pay at least $1.4 million in self-assessed federal taxes he owed for tax years 2016 through 2019 and to evade the assessment of taxes for tax year 2018 when he filed false returns,” Weiss’ office said in a news release when the charges were filed.

The indictment says that during that time period, Biden “spent this money on drugs, escorts and girlfriends, luxury hotels and rental properties, exotic cars, clothing, and other items of a personal nature, in short, everything but his taxes.”

Weiss’ office also indicted Biden on federal gun charges in September related to his possession of a gun while using narcotics. He pleaded not guilty in that case.