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Court rejects Hunter Biden’s appeal in gun case, setting stage for trial to begin next month

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Hunter Biden’s federal gun case should move forward, an appeals court ruled Thursday, setting the stage for the trial to begin next month in Delaware.

Lawyers for the president’s son had asked the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a ruling rejecting his bid to dismiss the case. But a three-judge panel said the 3rd Circuit doesn’t have jurisdiction to review the matter at this time.

In an order shortly after that ruling came down, U.S. District Judge Maryellen Noreika said the case would proceed to trial on June 3, and is expected to last three to six days.

Hunter Biden has pleaded not guilty to lying about his drug use in October 2018 on a form to buy a gun that he kept for about 11 days in Delaware. He has acknowledged an addiction to crack cocaine during that period, but his lawyers have said he didn’t break the law.

He was indicted after a plea deal that would have resolved the case without the spectacle of a trial imploded in July 2023 when a judge who was supposed to approve it instead raised a series of questions.

Noreika last month refused to throw out the indictment, rejecting Biden’s claim that he is being prosecuted for political purposes as well as other arguments.

His lawyers had argued the case was politically motivated and asserted that an immunity provision from an original plea deal that fell apart still holds. They had also challenged the appointment of Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss as special counsel to lead the prosecution.

The judge found that Biden’s team provided “nothing concrete” to support a conclusion that anyone actually influenced the special counsel’s team.

A separate trial on tax charges in California is also tentatively set to begin in June.

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