Hunter Biden Countersues Over Laptop Files . . . That May or Might Not Be His

Hunter Biden Countersues Over Laptop Files  … That May or Might Not Be His

It’s like asking police to look for people who may or may not have stolen a car that may or may not be yours.

 Jonathan Turley

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.


(TLB) published  this article from Jonathan Turley with our appreciation for this perspective

jonathan turley profile

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

Header featured image (edited) credit: Hunter Biden/NBC News screen shot

Emphasis and pictorial content added by (TLB) editors



Stay tuned to …


The Liberty Beacon Project is now expanding at a near exponential rate, and for this we are grateful and excited! But we must also be practical. For 7 years we have not asked for any donations, and have built this project with our own funds as we grew. We are now experiencing ever increasing growing pains due to the large number of websites and projects we represent. So we have just installed donation buttons on our websites and ask that you consider this when you visit them. Nothing is too small. We thank you for all your support and your considerations … (TLB)


Comment Policy: As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, or personal/abusive attacks on other users. This also applies to trolling, the use of more than one alias, or just intentional mischief. Enforcement of this policy is at the discretion of this websites administrators. Repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without prior warning.


Disclaimer: TLB websites contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, health, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.


Disclaimer: The information and opinions shared are for informational purposes only including, but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material are not intended as medical advice or instruction. Nothing mentioned is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.