(NewsNation) — A Colorado attorney says the Department of Justice is fighting his 2020 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request about Hunter Biden claiming outside officials don’t want certain information “to see the light of day.”
From inside a Denver federal circuit court, attorney Kevin Evans argued Monday in favor of a public records request he filed in search of information about Hunter Biden — the second son of President Joe Biden. Evans sued the DOJ last year after he said the department failed to comply with his FOIA request for records about the overseas business relationships of President Joe Biden’s son and brother, James.
The Colorado lawyer has claimed the DOJ is trying to conceal hundreds of documents involving Hunter Biden and his uncle James Biden’s overseas business dealings.
“I think we can all surmise why they’re fighting so hard to not produce them,” Evans said after court Monday. “There must be things in there that they would prefer not to see the light of day.”
Evans’ request, filed with the Justice Department on Nov. 19, 2020, sought documents “relating to Hunter Biden and pertaining to any relationship, communication, gift(s), and/or remuneration in any form” from China, Russia or Ukraine.
Evans filed the FOIA request after the New York Post published a story in November 2020 about emails and messages found on a laptop allegedly abandoned by Hunter Biden at a computer repair shop in Wilmington, Delaware, in April 2019.
On Monday, Evans argued for “limited discovery,” saying the DOJ had previously said in court there were some 400 pages of documents that fit the request, but that the department refused to hand them over.
“My understanding is the government doesn’t believe discovery is appropriate here and we should proceed to summary judgment,” Evans said in court Monday.
A summary judgment typically refers to a judge making a ruling on the merits of the case before a trial, according to the American Bar Association. Those generally happen when parties aren’t disputing facts, but rather a legal question.
The DOJ argued against Evans’ desire to learn more about what those 400 pages of potential responsive documents might contain.
“We’re not trying to hide the ball,” DOJ attorney Alexander Sverdlov said in court.
Evans thought otherwise.
“I think that’s exactly what they’re trying to do,” he said. “I think there’s information in those documents that they just don’t want to see the light of day.”
Both parties agreed to submit a status report and deadlines to file documents related to the DOJ’s request for summary judgment.
“It’s unusual to get discovery in a FOIA case… and so the government’s opposition was to be expected,” Evans said.
Monday’s court date came as a Republican-led House is planning to investigate whether President Joe Biden benefited from his son’s foreign business dealings.
Former congressman and White Flag podcast host Joe Walsh told NewsNation that while Hunter Biden using his name to get ahead is something that happens with both parties, any actual crime deserves investigation.
“I have no problem with the Justice Department looking into actual crimes that Hunter Biden committed. They should look into actual crimes that Donald Trump or any American committed,” Walsh said.
Vince Coglianese, editorial director for the Daily Caller, said House Republicans need to conduct an actual fact-finding investigation and avoid political theater given the nature of the allegations being made.
“We have his business partners on the record already alleged that Joe Biden was a beneficiary of this. That suggests to me some some, oh, basically exposure criminal exposure for the president of the United States,” he told NewsNation.
The National Archives also has plans to disclose documents from the Obama presidency. Joe Biden could halt that process for several years by invoking executive privilege.
It’s possible some of the documents the archives plans to release are related to Evans’ FOIA request, the attorney said.