OAN Brooke Mallory
UPDATED 6:50 PM – Friday, March 17, 2023
Hunter Biden has filed a sweeping countersuit against the computer repair shop owner in a legal action that escalates the battle over how provocative data and images of the president’s son were obtained nearly four years ago. The shop owner had claimed that Biden dropped his laptop off and never picked it up.
On Friday morning, in the counterclaim filed in U.S. District Court in Delaware, Biden and his attorneys said that John Paul Mac Isaac had no legal right to copy and distribute private information. They accused him and others of six counts of invasion of privacy, including conspiracy to obtain and distribute the data.
The 42-page document went into great detail about how Hunter Biden’s data came to be public, a development that thrusted it into the 2016 election controversy and, since January, to the center of a congressional investigation led by Republicans into the president’s son.
The lawsuit might bring more attention to Hunter Biden’s murky past, which includes lewd images, intimate audio, and a wealth of private texts and emails.
Hunter Biden and his lawyers are trying to reframe the story in part with the countersuit by putting the emphasis on a private citizen whose privacy was allegedly invaded rather than a man who detractors claim exploited his father’s name and gained from his political connections.
“As a result of Mac Isaac’s unlawful agreement and his conspiracy with others, Mr. Biden’s personal data was made available to third parties and then ultimately to the public at large, which is highly offensive, causing harm to Mr. Biden and his reputation… The object of invading Mr. Biden’s privacy and disseminating his data was not for any legitimate purpose but to cause harm and embarrassment to Mr. Biden,” the suit says.
This action is in response to a lawsuit that Mac Isaac himself filed last year and has since amended several times, alleging that Hunter Biden defamed him by claiming that he had illegally accessed the data when, in fact, the laptop became his property when it was left in his shop, according to Mac Isaac.
CNN, Politico, the Biden campaign, and Representative Adam B. Schiff (D-Calif.) were also named defendants in the repairman’s lawsuit.
A high-profile investigation into the president’s son is being prepared by James Comer (R-Ky.), the chairman of the House Oversight Committee. Hunter Biden’s decision to respond with an aggressive legal challenge of his own escalates the conflict with his detractors.
President Biden may find the dynamic to be an awkward diversion as he prepares to announce his reelection campaign in the coming weeks.
In order to determine any compensatory and correctional damages, Hunter Biden is requesting a jury trial. Additionally, the lawsuit requested that the court orders Mac Isaac and others to turn over any copies or incomplete copies of any data that belongs to President Biden’s son.
It is Hunter Biden’s first court document since his laptop came to the attention of the president’s political foes, and it exhibits a more aggressive stance by the legal team that Hunter Biden has recently assembled.
This is the first time the legal team has formally appeared in court. They have previously sent cease-and-desist letters and criminal referrals to various individuals.
Although the president’s son has never explicitly stated that the laptop belongs to him, the legal maneuver required careful positioning on his part.
In his lawsuit, Hunter Biden denies having dropped off the laptop, gotten an invoice, or forgotten to pick it up. According to the filing, Mr. Biden lacks the knowledge necessary to either admit or deny the allegations, despite what Mac Isaac has claimed.
He does, however, acknowledge that he is the owner of some of the information that has been made public and that Mac Isaac could have acquired it in April 2019.
“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,” the filing stated.
Hunter Biden contended that Delaware law would have limited Mac Isaac’s access to or dissemination of the data on the unclaimed laptop.
Frequently, Mac Isaac and his allies have cited a signed receipt which stated that any property not claimed within 90 days would be forfeited.
The agreement, according to Biden’s lawyers, was flawed. They claimed that the boilerplate terms were listed at the bottom of the page, well below the signature line, in small print.
A public notice asking the owner to retrieve the property must be posted, for example, before personal property in Delaware can be considered abandoned after a year.
According to the counterclaim, even if the laptop had been abandoned, Mac Isaac would only have been entitled to the equipment and not the data it contained.
“In fact, the Repair Authorization form states that the Mac Shop will make every effort to ‘secure your data… Reputable computer companies and repair people routinely delete personal data contained on devices that are exchanged, left behind, or abandoned. They do not open, copy, and then provide that data to others, as Mac Isaac did here,” said the filing.
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