SOURCE: Hiring of former VP’s son ‘was to protect the company…’
(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) A Reuters investigation into Hunter Biden‘s role at Ukraine‘s Burisma energy company revealed he may have been paid two-thirds more than originally reported—and he never set foot in Ukraine during his five years on the board.
Biden “provided advice on legal issues, corporate finance and strategy” without ever visiting the former Soviet satellite, according to multiple sources interviewed by Reuters.
“Biden regularly attended Burisma’s twice annual board meetings—all of which were held outside of Ukraine,” Reuters reported.
Additionally, sources said, “there were constant calls, dialogue, sharing of advice, consideration of different options [and] Expansion to other markets…” discussed with Biden but that, for the most part, “He was a ceremonial figure.”
Biden resigned from the board in April 2019, shortly before his father declared his 2020 presidential candidacy.
Records provided to Reuters by Ukrainian law-enforcement indicated that during an 18-month span from April 2014 to November 2015, Burisma made monthly payments of $83,000 to Biden’s firm, Rosemont Seneca Bohai LLC, for the purpose of “consulting services.”
Many preliminary reports listed Biden’s monthly Burisma salary as $50,000.
The payments disclosed in the newly released financial records were said to be for both Biden and his business partner, Devon Archer, who was a senior aide to then-Secretary of State John Kerry.
However, Reuters said it could not verify how the funds broke down between the two board members.
In a recent ABC interview, Biden refused to go into details about his compensation from the Ukrainian natural gas giant or from another suspicious business deal involving a Chinese investment company.
“One thing that I don’t have to do is sit here and open my kimono as it relates to how much money I make,” he said. “… But it’s all been reported.”
Another revelation from the Reuters piece was that it was the idea of the company’s founder, wealthy oligarch Mykola Zlochevsky, to hire Biden and other well-connected members of the political Left.
“It was to protect [the company]” said Oleksandr Onyshchenko, a source close to Zlochevsky.
Zlochevsky had been under investigation for corruption and embezzlement since 2012, but it seems Hunter Biden’s presence alone did little to alleviate the matter.
Prosecutor–General Viktor Shokin continued to probe the company, forcing Zlochevsky to flee Ukraine and live in exile for several years.
A year into Shokin’s tenure, Hunter’s father—then-Vice President Joe Biden—who was directly overseeing U.S.–Ukraine diplomacy at the time, forced top government officials to fire the prosecutor while threatening to withhold a billion-dollar loan guarantee.
The man who replaced Shokin was Yuriy Lutsenko, a partisan operative with a criminal history of his own and little investigative experience. He later claimed that the Bidens were not part of any Burisma probe.
However, in a sworn affidavit for an unrelated case, Shokin said his firing was the direct result of Joe Biden’s political pressure over the Burisma investigation.
Reuters reported that Ukrainian law-enforcement officials obtained the financial records about Hunter Biden’s Burisma payments while investigating the company’s business activities prior to the American political scion’s 2014 hiring.
On Oct. 4, Ukraine’s current prosecutor–general, Ruslan Ryaboshapka, said he was reopening a review of Burisma’s 15 previous investigations.
Reuters reported that although Ryaboshapka was revisiting the cases related to Zlochevsky, “no decision had been taken on how to proceed against him or people related to him.”
In their latest efforts to impeach President Donald Trump, House Democrats are now investigating a July phone call in which they claim, without evidence, that Trump illegally pressured his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, to reopen the probes while threatening to withhold military aide.