Hunter Biden trial winding down as defense prepares to rest its case

WILMINGTON, Del. — First son Hunter Biden’s attorneys are set to wrap up their case in their client’s federal firearm trial Monday after the presiding judge opted to cut proceedings short on Friday.

Lead defense attorney Abbe Lowell has called just three witnesses — including Hunter’s eldest daughter, Naomi — and indicated he would decide over the weekend whether the first son himself, or anybody else, would give evidence for the defense.

One possible defense witness — first brother James “Jimmy” Biden — was spotted inside the courthouse Friday by at least one reporter, but was not called to the stand.

Lowell also revealed to presiding judge Maryellen Noreika that the defense did not plan to put forward an independent expert to push back on forensic chemist Dr. Jason Brewer’s testimony about cocaine residue found on the pouch in which Hunter Biden’s sister-in-law-turned-lover Hallie disposed of the Colt Cobra .38-caliber revolver on Oct. 23, 2018.

Prosecutors from special counsel David Weiss’ office suggested they may also call one more rebuttal witness once the defense rests its case, should the government deem it necessary.

Family affair

First lady Jill Biden has been in attendance for every day of her stepson’s trial bar one — she missed Thursday’s proceedings to fly to France to observe commemorations of the 80th anniversary of D-Day alongside her husband, President Biden.

Hunter’s half-sister Ashley has also been a constant presence in the courtroom — often arriving in the company of the first son’s so-called “sugar brother,” Kevin Morris — as has the president’s sister, Valerie Biden Owens and Jill’s sister Bonny Jacobs.

President Biden himself put out a written statement on the first day of the trial of his son, making a show of noting that “[a]s the president, I don’t and won’t comment on pending federal cases” while also hailing Hunter as “inspiring.”

“I have boundless love for my son, confidence in him, and respect for his strength,” the 81-year-old added. “Our family has been through a lot together, and Jill and I are going to continue to be there for Hunter and our family with our love and support.”

On Thursday, Biden answered “yes” when asked by ABC “World News Tonight” anchor David Muir both whether he would accept the outcome if Hunter is convicted and whether he would rule out using his pardon power to set aside a conviction.

What comes next?

Proceedings will kick off at 8:15 a.m. Monday — about 45 minutes earlier than usual. Noreika is expected to rule on a few motions, including one from the defense to dismiss the case, before Lowell will likely start wrapping up his presentation.

If the prosecution does not call any rebuttal witnesses, both sides will then move to closing arguments.

The government lawyers took 30 minutes to make their opening statement Tuesday, while Lowell required 50.

Depending on when arguments wrap, the jury could get the case as soon as Monday afternoon and begin deliberating whether the president’s son broke the law.

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