DOJ Backs ATF’s Hunter Biden Privacy Excuse in FOIA Appeal

Laws for thee but not for me? It’s fair to ask how administration enforcers would react had this story been about anyone’s son but the president’s. (Cropped from photo by acaben: Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license)

U.S.A. – -(“You appealed on behalf of your client, David Codrea, from the action of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) on your client’s Freedom of Information Act request to certain records concerning Hunter Biden,” a Wednesday letter to attorney Stephen Stamboulieh from Administrative Appeals Staff Chief  Matthew Hurd observes. “I note that your appeal concerns ATF’s refusal to confirm or deny the existence of records responsive to your client’s request.”

By way of background for those new to this story, The Blaze reported in late October that “Hunter Biden’s handgun was taken from his vehicle without his knowledge by Hallie Biden,” his brother’s widow with whom he then had an affair, “and she placed it in a garbage can outside a Delaware supermarket.” Readers of this column will recall it tied that report in with the question of if the president’s son had broken the law by denying abuse of controlled substances on the Firearm Transaction Record, ATF Form 4473. Lying on the form is a federal felony. My AmmoLand report was followed up with two separate FOIA requests being filed a few weeks later, to both ATF and the Secret Service, which had also been reported to be investigating the Biden gun incident.

“[T]he request should have been denied categorically without a search due to the substantial privacy interests retained by the subject of Mr. Codrea’s request,” ATF then replied in May after initially challenging my qualifications to be considered a journalist, then claiming no records could be found, and then withdrawing its “no records” response.

Stamboulieh followed that up with a June 13 appeal, asserting:

“[T]he public interest substantially outweighs Mr. Biden’s privacy interest in this case … it is hard to find a way to argue that Mr. Biden’s privacy interest (whatever that interest is after he wrote a book detailing his drug and alcohol addictions) outweighs release of whatever records ATF may have responsive to the FOIA. Mr. Biden is clearly unconcerned about the release of his drug usage history, as he plainly discusses them in his book … Mr. Biden’s purchase of a firearm (and subsequent loss and lack of prosecution) is of such a public interest that twenty-two House of Representative members have asked that Mr. David Chipman ‘publicly commit to investigate allegations that Hunter Biden falsified information during a background check in order to illegally obtain a firearm’ … Mr. Hunter Biden’s ‘privacy interest is completely outweighed by the public interest in this matter…”

Hurd was not to be persuaded.

“ATF properly refused to confirm or deny the existence of such records,” he insisted. “Confirming or denying the existence of such records, including law enforcement records … would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy …”

The official Biden DOJ position is this is none of our business.

On the subject of law enforcement records, the Secret Service reports that it has none, and has signed an affidavit under penalty of perjury attesting to that. This is despite numerous media reports placing them at the scene of the investigation, and a mention of their presence in a text message found on Hunter Biden’s laptop:

“[T]he police the FBI [and] the secret service came on the scene.”

It hardly seems likely any functionary would assume the personal risks of lying about this, which leads to the question of who those reported to be “on the scene” were. Clearly, from the DOJ’s administrative appeals response, we can expect no help from them and the stonewalling will continue.

Not that we’re giving up.

“Now that we have exhausted our appeal, we will sue the agency for the release of these records which are obviously in the public interest,” Stamboulieh affirms.

Stay tuned.

About David Codrea:

David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

David Codrea

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Green Mtn. Boy

The law makers are the law breakers.


“DOJ Backs ATF’s Hunter Biden Privacy Excuse in FOIA Appeal”


Just imagine if this was one of President Trump’s children or, any Republican for that matter? It would have been leaked to corrupt media long ago!


The SINGLE most evidential terrorist threat in the United States, is the Biden Family Administration Slime!


The BATF better get the picture, the eyes of the country are on them and Lawyers are taking notes and what’s good for Hunter is good for the rest of us . The BATF will not have a legal leg to stand on if they are selectively enforcing laws . Thier credibility will be zero and a good lawyer will have a hay day with these clowns in future cases involving falsified firearm purchase forms and drug use ! The BATF will set a precident that will be used against them in courts accross this country . What part about… Read more »

Desert Rat

454, what are you smoking, brother? In today’s world controlled by the Democrat Criminal Conspiracy, no good attorney has a chance in protecting any of the deplorables if he/she came afoul of the BATFE in a court of injustice like the ones we have now. If the President of the United States can be impeached on a voice vote with no evidence presented and no defense allowed, how can you think that one of us common scum have a chance in such a court? The only alternative left is for The People to use the cartridge box, trials for the… Read more »


Don’t put your faith in lawyers, they are the ones who got us into this mess to begin with. Even Jesus Christ didn’t have anything good to say about them!


The rulers give no shits about optics. Because no one is going to do anything to stop or even slow them down in their utter takeover of every Western nation, uniting them under authoritarian bureaucracy. It moves forward every day, while morons like you get caught up in optics.


government officials lie? it can’t be so. they have no reason to do so.
this is why there should be the smallest federal government possible, get rid of 99% of all abc agencies and America would function just fine.


Response is on hold, but do you believe one of Walmart’s missions in the new world order was to create huge tunnels that go from Maine to D.C. and from D.C. to the west coast?

Ryben Flynn

Geologically impossible to go underground from the East Coast to the West Coast.


You’re splainin’ to the wrong person.


Sounds like an interesting topic. What makes it impossible? Beyond simple scale of such a project I’m thinking of yellowstone super volcano and tectonic movement. Interested to hear your explanation.

Given time and cost to put in the Chunnel (which is ~30 miles compared to the ~3k from coast-to-coast) this would be a ridiculous proposition even if it was technically feasible. Given ease of travelling above ground, what possible motive would anyone have to build such a monstrosity other than being @NRA Ben Solutions?

Way off topic – but at least one inquiring mind would like to know. 🙂


It’s all explained in the video – with proof. The part they don’t get into is that the Pope and some guy in London are in control of China and all but two U.S. legislators work for China and they molest and eat children. Anyhow, these people are the new world order and, as explained in the video, Walmart (which works for the child molesters/eaters) dug massive tunnels because . . . something . . . something . . . when the time comes, you know, they will use them, obviously, to you know. Earl explained it to me. It’s… Read more »


no, no. the guy has maps and everything. what did he say, preponderance of evidence.
sounds like the worlds supply of tinfoil is now gone.


Unconstitutional, treasonous “laws” are for the serfs, not the rulers.


thou shalt be humble do as I say, and bow before the POWER !




Sounds to me like another case of “rules for thee but not for me”.


Yes, keep after it!!


Joe has been selling his office since the beginning, and Hunter is the conduit with which it has been accomplished. Unless the CRBs are repentant, and reject their Communist handlers, there is but only one way to stop this, and by the time the sheeple come to that realization, it will be too late. May God have mercy on us, for I believe this is God’s judgement on our country because of our sins. Look to the past to see what prefaced the downfall of countries that once were powerful, but no more, and you find that The USA has… Read more »


See Jonathan Mayhew’s 1750 Sermon against Unconditional Submission.


Theres more to Hunter Biden that must never leak out. That explains why in spite of sufficient evidence against him, the government is clearly doing all it can to block the release of further information. If anything more about Joes dirt bag son is to be discovered, it might be easier to get it from non US sources where he has left a trail of crumbs and where money will buy information. The contents of Hunters magic laptop is in the hands of several good guys who for some reason are sitting on it. If that material was released to… Read more »


3-7-77 If I was to posit how this is going to turn out it would be they intentionally are going to push buttons and back the citizenry of this country into a corner until they get their asses vigilanted (yes a brand new verb). I think it is intentional. They are laying the propaganda ground work via the “white rage” and “white supremacist” being the greatest terrorism threat malarkey. All the while providing protection and cover for the Marxist, e.g. antifa, BLM, and etc. However, the demographic of this country is significantly more white. Therefore, when the citizenry has had… Read more »


It’s hard to say how many “whites” are in the US, currently, and how many “non-whites.” The government has been lying about that just like they have been lying about everything else. The probability is that illegals (and those eventually granted amnesty and citizenship) in the US from Central and South America are well over 100,000,000 by now, with as many as 150,000,000 being possible after factoring in their progeny. It is likely that the majority that whites make up is now very slim, and headed to a minority within a decade.


The actual numbers are not of primary importance. It is the perception and the spin from the Marxist regime, the Maxist media, and the useful idiot class will try to use for gaslighting and a smoke screen for their nefarious ways. I’m confident that in the end it isn’t the color of a person’s skin, but the desire to remain free that will help the US citizenry triumph once again over the Maxists.


all the blacks and hispanics I know, are disgusted and fed up with this administration. I`m just an old white guy who works with them.


Patriot Solutions – 8/4/21 “Like Boebert just said. Never ever trust the government, Lol. They have big plans for civilization, are our worst enemy.” Response to Patriot Solutions: Do you believe there are underground tunnels that Walmart new-world-order-trucks drive in that go from Maine to D.C. and from D.C. to the west coast? Are Boebert and Taylor aware of this, or is it top secret? Do you still believe Trump is going to take over the presidency from Biden this month, because . . . something . . . something . . . martial law . . . something… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by JSNMGC

well, I THINK the Biden crime family needs a new wardrobe. Blaze orange jump suits w/ numbers on the back. AND the individuals in the agencies that cover for them, AND most of Congress too. just my humble opinion. (sorry)


Hunter can’t do anything illegal.

(Said in a Vinny Barbarino voice) ‘Cause he’s Hunter Biden!


Oh what a load.