The special counsel appointed to oversee the federal investigation into Hunter Biden intends to seek a grand jury indictment of the president's son before the end of September, the prosecutor's office said Wednesday in a court filing.
The filing was made in the felony criminal action against Biden over the possession of a gun while using narcotics, and it also refers to the separately filed misdemeanor tax case prosecutors brought early this year. The filing suggests new charges could be filed in both cases this month.
“The Speedy Trial Act requires that the Government obtain the return of an indictment by a grand jury by Friday, September 29, 2023, at the earliest. The Government intends to seek the return of an indictment in this case before that date,” prosecutors wrote in Wednesday's filing.
Both the gun and the tax cases had been expected to be resolved at a plea hearing this year before it fell apart over a judge's questions about the agreement. The deal would have resulted in the gun charge’s being dismissed in two years if Biden stayed out of trouble, coupled with a recommendation of probation for the tax charges.
Abbe Lowell, an attorney for Biden, said in a statement Wednesday that his legal team believes the signed agreement in the gun case "remains valid and prevents any additional charges from being filed against Mr. Biden, who has been abiding by the conditions of release under that agreement for the last several weeks, including regular visits by the probation office."
The government has disputed that the agreement Lowell referred to is in effect.
"We expect a fair resolution of the sprawling, 5-year investigation into Mr. Biden that was based on the evidence and the law, not outside political pressure, and we’ll do what is necessary on behalf of Mr. Biden to achieve that," he added.
Asked for comment, the White House referred NBC News to Biden's personal representatives.
Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed U.S. Attorney David Weiss, based in Delaware, as special counsel to oversee Biden's case. Weiss, a Trump nominee, was already in charge of the investigation but had requested that he be elevated to special counsel.
That appointment came Aug. 11, shortly before prosecutors from Weiss' office said negotiations over the tax and gun charges against Biden had collapsed. His office noted in court filings that without the plea agreement in place, there were venue issues and the case would most likely have to go to trial in California or Washington, D.C. Prosecutors also suggested that they might bring different charges in the new case.
Under the terms of the original agreement, Biden would have pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor tax charges over his failure to pay income taxes, and prosecutors had agreed to a related agreement that could have resulted in the gun charge’s being dismissed.
Biden wound up pleading not guilty on the tax charges.