IRS whistleblowers reveal who’s really to blame for shocking Biden corruption

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In Wednesday’s marathon House hearing, Oversight Committee Democrats ran into a buzzsaw: two IRS whistleblower agents — Gary Shapley, the supervisor on the investigation who went public a few weeks ago, and Joseph Ziegler, the lead investigator on the case, who was publicly identified for the first time at the hearing.

In gory detail, the agents outlined how President Biden’s Justice Department quashed the Biden corruption investigation from within while publicly pretending that it was being conducted with independence and integrity.

When committee Democrats tried to poke holes in the testimony, they ended up on the receiving end of what they hadn’t bargained for: fusillades of fact — damning data about the millions raked in by the president’s son and family members from apparatchiks of corrupt and anti-American regimes.


The agents’ stellar performance did not surprise anyone who has ever participated in a criminal tax investigation. In nearly 20 years as a prosecutor, I was — as the lawyer on my cases — better versed in the criminal law applicable to, say, racketeering, international terrorism, money-laundering, admissibility of evidence, and standards of proof, than the agents from the FBI and other agencies with whom I worked, a sizable majority of whom were non-lawyers. Tax enforcement was an exception.

IRS whistleblowers Congress

Supervisory IRS Special Agent Gary Shapley, left, and IRS Criminal Investigator Joseph Ziegler are sworn in as they testify during a House Oversight Committee hearing related to the Justice Department’s investigation of Hunter Biden on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

The tax code is an esoteric area of the law. Experienced investigators know a lot more about it than most prosecutors — I learned a lot more from my IRS agents than they learned from me. In fact, tax enforcement is sufficiently abstruse that prosecutors from around the country need approval from the Justice Department’s Tax Division in Washington to file charges. In almost all other cases, they may indict without main Justice’s supervision.

In this very specialized area, it turns out that the very best tax-enforcement agents were assigned to the Biden case. Shapley and Ziegler have combined decades of education and experience in tax law and financial bookkeeping practices.

They have been involved in some of the most significant tax investigations, including international schemes, ever conducted in the U.S. They held critical positions and were trusted to run big cases because they knew their stuff.

And because they’ve been investigators for such a long time, they know how to testify — how not to get intimidated (especially when you know much more than the people asking the questions do) and how not to accept the premise of questions loaded with inaccuracies and misimpressions.

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill react to IRS whistleblowers’ testimony

It showed. The ranking Democrat on the panel, and thus the first in the minority to ask questions was Jamie Raskin, of Maryland, a tireless progressive partisan and former law professor who never tires of posing as a legal titan. But his questions were rife with disinformation and the witnesses called him on it.

He began, for example, trying to make the point that prosecutors and agents often disagree on whether felony charges ought to be brought. Rather than simply accept that proposition, which is true, Shapley explained why it is irrelevant — in this instance, the case agents and line prosecutors agreed that felony charges were appropriate; it was higher-ups in the Justice Department who slammed the brakes on the case.

On this point, it is vital that committee Republicans keep their eye on the ball.

Ohio Republican Jim Jordan, who besides being on yesterday’s panel is chairman of the Judiciary Committee with oversight over DOJ, took pains at the hearing to point out that, while the whistleblowers have been completely consistent, Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss has repeatedly changed his story.

Joe Ziegler

Joe Ziegler, Internal Revenue Service Whistleblower X, testifies before the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability on Capitol Hill on Wednesday. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images)

The agents stress that they were being ordered by prosecutors not to follow leads that could have garnered evidence against Joe Biden. Despite all the obstacles, they managed to make a strong case against Hunter Biden, but they couldn’t get it charged because Weiss told them he was not the ultimate decisionmaker — he was being stymied by the Biden Justice Department.

But Attorney General Merrick Garland has publicly claimed that Weiss was in charge and was assured that he would have all the authority he needed to bring any charges in any jurisdiction — all he needed to do was ask.

Initially, Weiss backed that story. But then, when Shapley became the first of the whistleblowers to go public, Weiss changed his tune, struggling to back Garland while not contradicting Shapley, whose account is richly corroborated.


First Weiss said he had the authority. Then he conceded that he lacked authority to file charges outside his district of Delaware (i.e., in districts where Hunter had allegedy committed tax crimes), but vaporously added that he had consulted with the Justice Department about that problem. Then he claimed that he had not asked to be designated a special counsel, which would have given him authority to file charges anywhere.

It showed. The ranking Democrat on the panel, and thus the first in the minority to ask questions was Jamie Raskin, of Maryland, a tireless progressive partisan and former law professor who never tires of posing as a legal titan. But his questions were rife with disinformation and the witnesses called him on it.

Meantime, Shapley’s account was never shaken: Weiss had told a room full of agents that the Justice Department had refused to grant him special counsel authority, and that he was being blocked from filing felony tax charges against Hunter by Biden-appointed U.S. attorneys in Washington, D.C., and California.

Jordan is right that Weiss is a weasel. But Weiss is the wrong target here. He is just the fall-guy for Garland. Contrary to what the attorney general would have the country to believe, it was not Weiss’s job to ask for special counsel authority. It was Garland’s duty to appoint a special counsel the moment he realized there was a conflict of interest that prevented DOJ from investigating in the normal course.


There could be no more profound conflict than the Biden Justice Department’s being in the position of investigating President Biden’s son and other family members in an international corruption probe in which the president himself is deeply implicated.

Biden’s attorney general did not appoint a special counsel because he made protecting his boss, the president, his highest priority. That is why the case the whistleblowers so compellingly described at the hearing was sabotaged. The culprit here is not Weiss. It’s Garland.

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