Jury begins deliberations after closing arguments

WILMINGTON, Del. — Jurors in Hunter Biden’s gun trial started deliberating Monday after they heard new proof from a witness about his drug use in October 2018, across the time he’s alleged to have illegally bought a firearm.

Prosecutors rested their case after they informed jurors that Biden was a “routine” person of medication from 2015 to 2019, a interval that overlaps along with his gun possession, and that he knew he was an addict and even wrote extensively about it in his memoir.

His lead protection lawyer, Abbe Lowell, mentioned that whereas Biden could also be an addict, prosecutors had not confirmed that he knowingly lied past affordable doubt on the shape he used to purchase the gun.

Image: profile sunglasses black clothes sunglasses (Matt Slocum / AP)Image: profile sunglasses black clothes sunglasses (Matt Slocum / AP)

Picture: profile sun shades black garments sun shades (Matt Slocum / AP)

“With this very excessive burden, it’s time to finish this case,” Lowell mentioned.

After a response from the prosecutors, U.S. District Decide Maryellen Noreika accomplished her directions to the jurors. They started deliberations however didn’t attain a verdict and can resume Tuesday morning.

Biden was embraced by his spouse, Melissa Cohen Biden, his uncle James Biden and others. At occasions, he held his palms collectively on the desk as he watched the jury and the prosecutors.

Right here’s what you missed on Day 6 of Hunter Biden’s trial:

Closing statements

Assistant particular counsel Leo Smart pointed on the swell of Biden confidants seated behind the protection desk as he started his closing arguments, a crowd that has included Biden’s mates and shut family, together with his spouse and his stepmother, first girl Jill Biden. Melissa Cohen Biden, Jill Biden and his half-sister, Ashley, all wore black.

“All of this isn’t proof,” Smart mentioned, gesturing at three packed rows. “Individuals sitting within the gallery will not be proof.”

The jurors might acknowledge them or might have seen them reacting to one thing, he mentioned, “however respectfully none of that issues.”

Smart mentioned Biden knew he was hooked on medication and purchased the gun anyway, mendacity on a federal type to go a background examine.

“It’s plain and easy. These similar legal guidelines apply to the defendant identical to they’d to anyone else,” Smart mentioned. “What results in the three felony fees on this case are the defendant’s selections, not anybody else’s.”

Lowell mentioned in his closing assertion that jurors couldn’t convict Biden primarily based on the insinuations and conjecture that he mentioned had been the premise for the federal government’s case, and he returned to Biden’s memoir.

“Affordable Doubt = Not Responsible,” learn a slide Lowell introduced throughout his assertion.

Lowell mentioned the jury ought to rigorously weigh testimony by which witnesses obtained immunity, and he appeared to recommend that Zoe Kestan, Biden’s former girlfriend, or Hallie Biden, the widow of Biden’s brother, Beau, each of whom offered devastating accounts of Biden’s spiral into drug habit, couldn’t be taken at face worth.

“Whether or not or not their testimony might have been influenced by the federal government’s promise is for to you identify,” Lowell mentioned.

He additionally slammed prosecutors’ “merciless” questioning of Biden’s daughter, Naomi, who, beneath cross-examination Friday, shared with the court docket that he had texted her at 2 a.m. to trade automobiles or that she wrote to him exasperated when her subsequent efforts to succeed in him went unanswered.

Prosecutors requested Naomi Biden whether or not she knew if her father was assembly with somebody named “Frankie” throughout that point or had shared a code to entry his checking account. She informed the court docket she couldn’t keep in mind.

If somebody suggests Biden was assembly with a vendor as a substitute of her “however you don’t produce that man or any precise proof that that trade occurred, and then you definately ask her if she makes use of cocaine, that’s affordable doubt,” Lowell mentioned. “And terribly merciless.”

Lowell appeared to land a punch when he returned to the testimony of the salesperson who bought Biden his gun, who final week informed the court docket that he noticed clients carefully for any indicators of drug use or ingesting and would refuse a sale if he had any doubt.

After having mulled over the choice over the weekend, Biden selected to not testify in his personal protection, which might have opened him as much as probably damaging cross-examination.

New textual content messages

FBI Particular Agent Erika Jensen testified about beforehand unseen messages and site information from Biden’s cellphone, which confirmed him at or close to a 7-Eleven on two dates close to the time of the gun buy, a interval the protection has characterised as a niche within the prosecution’s case.

When Biden texted Hallie Biden, his sister-in-law and former romantic associate, about ready at a 7-Eleven for a “vendor named ‘Mookie’” the day after he purchased the gun, it was as a result of he was avoiding her on the time, the protection urged.

Prosecutors informed Biden over the weekend that Naomi Biden’s testimony was inconsistent with new messages and site information they uncovered from his cellphone, together with her account of when her father arrived in New York to fulfill together with her in October 2018. In an e-mail to the protection late Sunday, prosecutors shared 42 textual content messages from Hunter Biden and others, in addition to video and different information that confirmed contradictory proof.

A number of the messages confirmed that within the days after Biden purchased a gun, he was arranging to fulfill somebody named “Junior” at a 7-Eleven, who, at one level, requested him, “Would you like the identical?”

Jurors took detailed notes.

In response, Lowell argued that when Hunter Biden texted Hallie Biden “are you up” within the early hours of the morning whereas ready at a 7-Eleven, there might have been a less complicated clarification.

“You don’t know whether or not it was for a donut, a espresso?” he mentioned.

This text was initially printed on NBCNews.com

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