It only took them 769 days.
CBS News said Monday it confirmed the authenticity of data from Hunter Biden’s former laptop — more than two years after The Post first disclosed the contents ahead of the 2020 presidential election — after the first son’s lawyer complained that he did not “ consented” to the publication.
The laptop linked President Biden to his son and brother James Biden’s overseas influence, but senior former US intelligence officials initially claimed it was likely Russian disinformation, and the story was censored by Twitter and Facebook before the election.
Most major news outlets ignored the laptop’s contents until recently. CBS’s report follows a belated verification of the laptop in March by the Washington Post and the New York Times.
CBS correspondent Catherine Herridge reported that she received a copy of Hunter Biden’s hard drive from former Delaware computer repairman John Paul Mac Isaac, and that Minnesota computer scientists led by former Secret Service computer crime expert Mark Lanterman said the files appeared legitimate.
Lanterman’s firm determined that the laptop’s contents accumulated over time as would be expected and that there was no evidence that the documents had been altered by outsiders.
Herridge did not specifically say which documents from the laptop were determined to be authenticated, including an infamous email from May 2017 that described a 10% cut for the “big guy” as part of her reporting — but said two sources confirmed to her that Joe Biden was the person identified as the “big guy.”
“Two of Hunter Biden’s former business partners, including Tony Bobulinski, who received the email, told CBS News that the 10% ‘which of the H for the big guy’ was shorthand for the 10% held by Hunter for his father,” Herridge reported . “The author [of the email, James Gilliar] has not responded to CBS News’ questions.”
Mac Isaac says Hunter Biden brought the laptop to his store in Delaware and never picked it up. He adds that the FBI seized the original laptop in December 2019 after he alerted the agency to its contents. In October 2020, he provided files from the device to The Post.
“At no time did anyone, including Mr. Mac Isaac, have Mr. Biden’s consent to access his computer data or share it with others,” Hunter Biden’s attorney, Chris Clark, told CBS,
Clark also said, without giving any specific examples, “There have been numerous attempts to hack, infect, distort and sell disinformation regarding Mr. Biden’s devices and data.”
The incoming Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee, Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), said Thursday he will help lead the GOP’s effort to learn about Joe Biden’s connection to his family’s business endeavors.
“This committee will assess whether this president is compromised or influenced by foreign dollars. This is an investigation of Joe Biden,” Comer said.
The first document reported by The Post from Hunter Biden’s laptop described Joe Biden’s attendance at a 2015 dinner at D.C.’s Cafe Milano, to which his son invited a number of employees — including a representative of the Ukrainian gas company Burisma, which paid Hunter Biden up to $1 . million light years while his father was leading the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy.
Documents on the laptop show Hunter Biden also invited a trio of Kazakh businessmen and Russian billionaire Yelena Baturina and her husband, former Moscow mayor Yury Luzhkov, to the dinner.
Baturina reportedly paid $3.5 million in 2014 to a firm linked to Hunter Biden and remains one of only a handful of Russian billionaires not facing U.S. sanctions in response to this year’s Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Online business records also show Hunter still has a 10% stake in BHR Partners, a Chinese state-backed private equity firm that manages $2.1 billion in assets and takes a prominent role in acquiring overseas assets.
Hunter Biden co-founded BHR Partners in 2013 within weeks of joining then-Vice President Joe Biden aboard Air Force Two on an official trip to Beijing, according to the Wall Street Journal. Hunter introduced his father to future BHR CEO Jonathan Li in a hotel lobby, and Joe Biden later wrote letters of recommendation to Li’s children.
In the separate Chinese venture that mentioned “the big guy” getting a cut, Hunter and James Biden earned $4.8 million from CEFC China Energy – part of Beijing’s foreign influence “Belt and Road” initiative – in 2017 and 2018, according to the Washington Post.