The State Department said it would hand over emails mentioning Hunter Biden to the New York Times

Hunter Biden

WFP USA Chairman Hunter Biden speaks during the World Food Program USA’s 2016 McGovern-Dole Leadership Award Ceremony at the Organization of American States on April 12, 2016 in Washington, DC.Kris Connor / WireImage / Getty Images

  • The State Department said it would provide New York Times records regarding Hunter Biden.

  • The Times sued the agency in January after it allegedly went slow with a request for registration.

  • A lawyer for the Times said the State Department will begin handing out records in April.

The U.S. State Department said it would hand over e-mail records referring to Hunter Biden to the New York Times after the publication sued the federal agency.

In a lawsuit Friday, David McCraw, a lawyer representing the New York Times, wrote that the State Department had begun identifying records requested by the Times through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and agreed to give them to the Times from April.

“The State Department has begun identifying items that respond to The Times’ FOIA requests,” McGraw wrote in a letter to the judge who oversaw the trial. “It has agreed to begin processing records for production as it continues to identify the remaining responsive records.”

The Times sued the State Department in January, claiming the agency did not respond in a timely manner to two FOIA requests. Kenneth Vogel, a journalist for the Times, requested copies of e-mail correspondence between August 2015 and December 2019 between officials at the U.S. Embassy in Romania who mentioned Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden.

Vogel also asked for records mentioning Tony Bobulinski, a former business associate of Hunter Biden; Louis Freeh, the former FBI director who allegedly gave Biden a gift of $ 100,000; Rudy Giuliani, who was then tasked by then-President Donald Trump to dig up dirt on Biden in Europe; Devin Archer, another former friend of the president’s son who was recently sentenced to one year in prison for fraud; and more than a dozen other people.

The Times claimed that the State Department violated the law by failing to communicate the registration request in a timely manner. The agency told the Times it would begin producing documents for Vogel’s requests in April 2023.

In its own trial earlier in March, the federal government denied that it had illegally complied with FOIA requests. U.S. District Judge J. Paul Oetken, who is overseeing the case, scheduled a hearing on the March 17 trial.

McGraw said in his letter that there was no need to hold the meeting at the time because the State Department had agreed to start handing over documents. He wrote that each party could provide status updates while continuing to negotiate on how the State Department would meet Vogel’s requests.

“The parties are still negotiating the number of pages to be processed and the frequency of each production,” McGraw wrote. “The parties respectfully propose to present a progress report to the Court on 25 March 2022, informing the Court of the outcome of this hearing.”

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