By Jon Dougherty
(NationalSentinel) Hunter Biden, son of former VP Joe Biden, now a leading 2020 Democratic presidential contender, has been named as a source of a potential conflict of interest in a probe initiated by Sen. Chuck Grassley involving the purchase of an American company that made anti-vibration technologies by a state-owned Chinese aviation company and an investment firm with ties to the Communist Party.
In aÂ letterÂ to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin dated Aug. 14, Grassley said he wants a copy of theÂ National Security Threat Assessment linked to the sale and transaction. In addition, the Iowa Republican is seeking details about the approval timeline while inquiring about whether the White House was briefed on the relevant deliberations.
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which has its origins in the Obama administration, approved the transaction when Joe Biden was still serving as vice president.
Hunter Biden and Chris Heinz, son of former U.S. senator and Obama Secretary of State John Kerry, each had financial stakes in Bohai Harvest RST, the China-linked firm that acquired Henniges, the maker of the anti-vibration technology.
â€œThe appearance of potential conflicts in this case is particularly troubling given Mr. Bidenâ€™s and Mr. Heinzâ€™s history of investing in and collaborating with Chinese companies, including at least one posing significant national security concerns,â€ Grassley wrote. â€œThis history with China pre and post-dates the 2015 Henniges transaction.â€
The Epoch Times reported:
Grassley cites several examples which suggest that conflicts of interest may have tainted the approval process. In an early example, Hunter and Joe Biden flew to China in December of 2013, one month after the merger involving the Hunter Biden-founded firm which created Bohai Harvest RST. During the trip, Hunter Biden helped arrange a meeting betweenÂ Jonathan Li, the CEO of Bohai Capital, and then-Vice President Biden. Hunter Biden then had a private meeting with Li. After the trip, the business license ofÂ Bohai Harvest RST was approved.
A year later, in December of 2014,Â Bohai Harvest RST invested inÂ China General Nuclear Power Corp. Roughly five months later, the Department of Justice chargedÂ China General Nuclear Power with conspiracy to develop special nuclear material outside the United States.
Henniges was acquired for $600 million in September 2015. The Aviation Industry Corporation of China joined with Bohai in order to take over the U.S. company, with each acquiring 51 percent and 49 percent of Henniges respectively.
CFIUS signed off on the acquisition despite the fact that the Chinese aviation firm was involved, reportedly, in the theft of sensitive military technology related to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program.
The stolen data was eventually incorporated into the Chinese air force’s new J-20 and J-31 stealth fighter aircraft.
â€œRecent reporting shows an overwhelming risk of conflicts and national security concerns in the Henniges acquisition that require additional Congressional scrutiny to ensure that the CFIUS process worked as designed, free of any political pressure and influence,â€ Grassley wrote.
Others have questioned the ties between the Biden family and China in the past.
In April, pundit and analyst Steve Hilton called the elder Biden “Joe China” for his questionable connections and assistance to his son regarding a billion-dollar-plus investment arrangement with Bohai:
In December 2013, then-Vice President Biden rode Air Force Two on an official trip to Asia, as tensions were high over disputed territories in the East China Sea. Biden was joined by his son, Hunter, who was building a private equity firm along with his business partner and friend, Chris Heinz – heir of the Heinz Ketchup family fortune and stepson of then-Secretary of State John Kerry.
Vice President Biden and Hunter Biden were ushered into Beijing on a red carpet with a delegation of Chinese officials. From there, Joe went straight into meetings with the vice president of China and President Xi Jinping. The next morning, the Bidens had a meeting with the U.S.-China Business Council. From there, it was off to Villa No.5 of the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse, where Madame Mao lived during the cultural revolution.
Joe Biden struck a soft, friendly tone with the Chinese leadership, disappointing allies in the area, like Japan, who were alarmed by China’s increasing aggression. But perhaps Joe had other issues besides the global balance of power on his mind, issues like his son’s business deals.
Hunter’s presence on the trip was far from coincidence. Just 10 days later, his company, Rosemont Seneca, signed an exclusive $1 billion deal with the state-owned Bank of China, creating an investment fund called Bohai Harvest, with money backed by the Chinese government. In the words of Peter Schweizer, who first unveiled these conflicts of interest in his book “Secret Empires,” “the Chinese government was literally funding a business that it co-owned along with the sons of two of America’s most powerful decision makers.” That is what it looks like to be “compromised by a foreign power.”
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