We have been discussing the scorched earth campaign by Hunter Biden’s new legal team as well as a type of legion of Doom of Democratic activists. That included seeking criminal investigations of critics while threatening a wide array of journalists and potential witnesses with civil lawsuits. Today, Biden moved against John Paul Mac Isaac, the repairman who revealed the laptop and its contents. The lawsuit, in my view, has serious flaws, but reflects the new “dark Biden” stage of this saga. The effort to go on offense against key figures and witnesses could well backfire for the Hunter Biden team and his family.
In the 42-page filing below in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware includes six privacy-related counts.
Previously, the new Biden team stumbled out of the gate by seemingly (and belatedly) admitted that the laptop is authentic and then backtracking. In an earlier column on the letters sent by Hunter Biden’s lawyer Abbe Lowell, I discussed his calling for criminal investigations, the removal of tax exempt status, and other measures targeting critics and media. It also appeared to confirm that the laptop is indeed Hunter’s. However, the next day, Lowell told NBC “These letters do not confirm Mac Isaac’s or others’ versions of a so-called laptop.” It is a curious position when asking for criminal investigations like asking police to look for people who may or may not have stolen a car that may or may not be yours.
In the new filing, the team continues to equivocate on ownership and even refuses to admit that Hunter Biden left the computer at the shop. Ironically, Hunter Biden hits Issac for conflicting accounts on how the computer came into his possession. In a filing alleging the loss of privacy and ownership of these files, the Hunter Biden legal team still plays coy on the computer’s authenticity. At the top of the countersuit they state:
“In or before April 2019, Counterclaim Defendant Mac Isaac, by whatever means, came into possession of certain electronically stored data, at least some of which belonged to Counterclaim Plaintiff Biden.”
That line is then followed by this footnote:
1 This is not an admission by Mr. Biden that Mac Isaac (or others) in fact possessed any particular laptop containing electronically stored data belonging to Mr. Biden. Rather, Mr. Biden simply acknowledges that at some point, Mac Isaac obtained electronically stored data, some of which belonged to Mr. Biden.
It is still not clear what Biden is trying to suggest. Putting aside someone representing themselves as Hunter Biden, the other possibility is that someone stole the laptop of the son of the Vice President and then took the risk of bringing it into a shop for repair (while using the victim’s name).
The biggest problem facing Biden is that he abandoned the laptop, unless he continues to maintain the possible evil twin or deranged thief theories. The filing, however, offers a new claim to get over this hurdle.
The standard agreement of the shop states “[e]quipment left with the Mac Shop after 90 days of notification of completed service will be treated as abandoned and you agree to hold the Mac Shop harmless for any damage or loss of property.”
Notably, Biden does not deny that he signed that agreement, but he refuses to say that he did. Instead, he claims that the provision is void under a Delaware law setting a period of a year to obtain lawful ownership over abandoned property. 25 Del. C. § 4001. However, the provision states that a person loses ownership claims if he “failed to otherwise assert or declare the ownership rights to the tangible personal property for a period of 1 year.”
The filing focuses on Issac disclosing the contents before the year period but ignores that Biden has not claimed ownership for multiple years. However, the counterclaim maintains that Issac did not even wait the 90 days to access and share some of the material.
It is a curious line of argument for a court, which is faced with an individual who continues to question his ownership of the computer while asserting ownership rights. He also questions whether Issac was premature to claim the property when he still equivocates over whether this is his property over two years after the disclosures.
If Hunter Biden abandoned this property, it is hard to see how he maintains privacy interests in files that he never sought to protect and still does not fully admit are his.
For example, he raised the common tort of intrusion in his private affairs, but he may have effectively released that information into the public domain through his abandonment.
He also raises the common law torts of disclosure of embarrassing private facts. However, that tort has an exception for newsworthiness:
§ 652D Publicity Given to Private Life
One who gives publicity to a matter concerning the private life of another is subject to liability to the other for invasion of his privacy, if the matter publicized is of a kind that
(a) would be highly offensive to a reasonable person, and
(b) is not of legitimate concern to the public.
In the end, Biden could be seeking greater discovery on the involvement of political figures like Rudy Giuliani. However, discovery also presents a risk for Hunter Biden, who has yet to be fully examined under oath over his own actions and contacts in the matter. The refusal to admit ownership (or prior conduct) may be due to Hunter Biden remaining under criminal investigation in Delaware on matters potentially related to files found on the laptop. The Justice Department seized the laptop over a year ago.
Biden is asking a court to carry considerable water to allow him to advance such arguments while continuing to question the ownership of the computer or whether he signed the underlying agreement. Indeed, it is curious (if he did not sign the agreement) that there has not been an allegation of fraud or forgery raised by the team. Instead, the legal team attacks the agreement as possibly taking advantage of Hunter Biden, who is an attorney, by noting “the boilerplate terms of the Repair Authorization form used by Mac Isaac were contained in small-print font at the bottom of the page, well below the signature line.”
The question is whether this conflicted set of claims is “well below”
the tolerance level of the federal court.
229 thoughts on “Hunter Biden Countersues Over Laptop Files . . . That May or Might Not Be His”
That “patriotic” friend of yours you’re currently texting about protesting Trump’s arrest in NYC is a federal informant and your text messages from today are going to be read out loud in front of a jury of 12 NYC communists who hate you. Just a heads up.
This whole thing seems surreal. The laptop was obviously his. It seems that so many people are vested in it being a nothing-burger–but, at a minimum, we all should be able to trust that Paul Manafort and Hunter Biden are being treated the same when it comes to FARA. That doesn’t appear to be the case. Also, did Hunter timely pay his taxes on this income?
Hunter Biden is not even being treated the same as other people involved in his own actions.
Ho was tried and convicted. Devon Archer – Hunter’s partner went to prison.
Your country’s greatest enemy, a dictatorship, wants to know your political secrets, wants access to your economy, and desires to steal your technology.
That country could send a seductive spy to sleep with your politicians. It could flood your universities with “Centers” and “partnership programs.” Of it could go old school and simply buy your politicians. (At least now we know why Biden allowed a Chinese spy balloon to traverse the entire country.)
As you can see from many of the comments, your country’s greatest enemy will have avid supporters, in your home-grown Apologists.
Any comments from Turley should be considered suspicious. After all, he collects a paycheck from a company that has a business model and brand of lying to it’s own viewers, listening and reading audience.
Any comments by FishWings should be considered retaliatory for having been thrown off this blog previously.
I was never thrown off.
Can we cut the Crap.
Yes, Turley on occasion recieves money from a company that is far less deceiptful than the rest of media.
We all read his posts here.
Many of us have watched him on Fox and elsewhere.
Has he LIED ? Nope.
Has he often times given those on the left more credit or deference than they deserve – absolutely.
Does he often suspect malfeasance on the right when there is ZERO evidence – absolutely.
His instincts, his allocation of the benefit of the doubt still lean left. a bit.
Has he been wrong about the law – not that I recall.
I periodically have minor disagreements with Turley.
But I do not question his honesty, his integrity – as you do.
I do not question that even when I think he is wrong.
“Yes, Turley on occasion receives money from a company that is far less deceitful than the rest of the media.”
LOL!!!!! He receives money from fox news all the time. They are deceitful ALL the time. That’s why they are in trouble with dominion. Dominion has a strong case against Fox News. It’s Fox New’s business model. Keeping their audience stupid and gullible.
We have been through this.
You are wrong.
If Rachel maddow did not defame OAN by saying “OAN is litterally Russian paid propoganda” which is false.
Then Fox did not defame DVS by allowing guests to claim DVS rigged the election – a claim that still has not been disproven.
You beleive that claim is false.
I beleive that claim is false.
Fox beleives that claim is false.
But the standard of defamation is beleived false.
It is what is KNOW to be false AT THE TIME.
I do not KNOW that DVS did not rig the 2020 election.
No one at this time KNOWS that – unless some at DVS know they actually did.
That this was not dismissed with predjudice long ago is proof of the corruption and bias in law.
Trump sued Clinton – Who KNEW the Russian collusion nonsense was a hoax,. because SHE created the Hoax, and Trump lost.
There is no possibility in the world that DVS wins.
This should not even be in court.
Should it get to the supreme court – it will be dispatched quickly.
You can not have a free press and require that they can not print anything they can not prove beyond any doubt is true.
Should DVS manage to win the Fox claim – then Trump would be able to successfully sue most of the media over the collusion delusion claim.
Fox is the most trusted meida outlet as evidenced by the fact that 14 of the top 15 news shows are on Fox.
Gtfeld is even beating late night talk shows.
Hello, FishWings! Glad you are back.
Fish Wings – Regarding Turley’s politics, consider the following quote from Wikipedia:
“In appearances on Countdown with Keith Olbermann and The Rachel Maddow Show, he called for criminal prosecution of Bush administration officials for war crimes, including torture.
In USA Today in October 2004, he argued for the legalization of polygamy . . ..
. . . .
In October 2006, in an interview by Keith Olbermann of MSNBC, he expressed strong disapproval of the Military Commissions Act of 2006.[ . . .Commenting on the Military Commissions Act of 2006, which he contends does away with habeas corpus, Turley says, “It’s something that no one thought—certainly I didn’t think—was possible in the United States. And I am not too sure how we got to this point. . . .
When the U.S. Senate was about to vote on Michael Mukasey for U.S. attorney general, Turley said, “The attorney general nominee’s evasive remarks on ‘water-boarding’ should disqualify him from the job.” . . .
. . . .
When Congressional Democrats asked the Justice Department to investigate the CIA’s destruction of terrorist interrogation tapes Turley said, “these are very serious allegations, that raise as many as six identifiable crimes ranging from contempt of Congress, to contempt of Justice, to perjury, to false statements.
. . . .
He has written extensively in opposition to the death penalty, noting, “Human error remains a principal cause of botched executions… eventually society will be forced to deal directly with a fundamental moral question: Has death itself become the intolerable element of the death penalty?”
He is a critic of special treatment for the church in law, asking why there are laws that “expressly exempt faith-based actions that result in harm.”
This doesn’t sound like a rabid right winger. And I assume that when he appeared on Olbermann’s and Maddow’s shows, he was paid.
“It is still not clear what Biden is trying to suggest.” (JT)
That filing is as clear, crisp, and meaningful as are his “paintings.”