Former FBI Informant Arrested Again in Las Vegas on Charges of Lying about Biden Bribery Allegations

LAS VEGAS — Alexander Smirnov, a former FBI informant accused of fabricating multimillion-dollar bribery allegations against President Joe Biden and his son Hunter, was taken into custody again on Thursday. This development comes just two days after a judge had granted him release ahead of trial, as stated in court documents filed by his attorneys. Smirnov, who holds dual U.S.-Israeli citizenship, was arrested during a meeting with his lawyers in downtown Las Vegas after prosecutors appealed the ruling that allowed his release with a GPS monitor. The arrest was made on a warrant for the same charges issued in California, where the case was originally filed.

The court docket listed several sealed entries regarding Smirnov’s return to custody, but no further details were immediately available. A spokesperson for Justice Department special counsel David Weiss confirmed the arrest, while Gary Schofield, the chief marshal in Las Vegas, stated that Smirnov is currently in the custody of U.S. Marshals in Nevada.

Smirnov, 43, is charged with making false statements and creating a false and fictitious record. Prosecutors allege that he lied to his FBI handler, claiming that executives from the Ukrainian energy company Burisma had paid President Biden and Hunter Biden $5 million each around 2015. These allegations played a central role in the Republican impeachment inquiry against President Biden. Smirnov has not entered a plea, but his lawyers maintain his innocence and express their intention to defend him at trial.

In their efforts to keep Smirnov in custody, prosecutors revealed that he had informed investigators after his initial arrest that he had been in contact with officials associated with Russian intelligence. They further stated that Smirnov’s recent and extensive self-reported contact with Russian officials, along with his planned meeting with foreign intelligence contacts during an upcoming trip abroad, raised concerns about his trustworthiness.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Daniel Albregts had ordered Smirnov’s release on Tuesday, expressing concerns about his access to an estimated $6 million. However, he emphasized that federal guidelines required him to impose the least restrictive conditions ahead of trial. Smirnov was ordered to stay in the area and surrender his passports, with Albregts warning him that any violation would result in his return to federal custody. Smirnov’s lawyers assert that he has been fully compliant with his release conditions.

Prosecutors appealed the release order to U.S. District Judge Otis D. Wright in California, where the case is based. They argued that Smirnov’s history of lying to his FBI handler, with whom he had a 10-year relationship involving daily communication, made him untrustworthy to provide truthful information to pretrial services. They emphasized the ongoing impact of Smirnov’s false statements and fabricated information, stating that his freedom was now at stake.

Smirnov had been an informant for over a decade before making the explosive allegations against the Bidens in June 2020. Prosecutors revealed that he had expressed bias against Joe Biden as a presidential candidate. However, court documents indicate that Smirnov’s business dealings with Burisma were routine and only began in 2017. No evidence has emerged to support claims of corruption or bribery by Joe Biden in his current or previous roles.

Smirnov’s claims have played a significant role in Republican efforts to investigate the Bidens, leading to a House impeachment inquiry into President Biden. While Republicans demanded the release of the unredacted form documenting the unverified allegations, Democrats called for an end to the probe following Smirnov’s indictment. Republicans have distanced themselves from Smirnov’s claims, stating their commitment to following the facts.

CrimeDoor
Author: CrimeDoor

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