Hunter Biden requested a $2 million annual retainer and "success fees" to help unfreeze Libyan assets when his father, Joe Biden, was vice president, according to emails reviewed by Business Insider.
Through an intermediary, the younger Biden offered to help recover $15 billion in Libyan assets that the Obama administration froze during the reign of Muammar Qaddafi. The intermediary, a Democratic donor, in a Jan. 28, 2015, email asked for a "close circle of people" to be involved in the offer "for confidentiality," adding that Joe Biden was considering running for president. Another email on Feb. 26, 2016, stressed the importance of only a small, close-knit group's being involved "due to the sensitivities surrounding their involvement."
The emails further reveal a well-established pattern of nepotism in the Biden family, in which Hunter Biden has made frequent and lucrative use of his father's political connections. The New York Post in Oct. 2020 released a smoking-gun report that detailed meetings in 2015 between Joe Biden and the head of a Ukrainian gas company—less than a year before the then-vice president pressured government officials to fire a prosecutor investigating the company. At the time, Hunter Biden was being paid $50,000 to sit on on the board of the company.
The Democratic donor involved with Hunter Biden's Libya deal, Sam Jauhari, advertised Biden's access to high-ranking members of the State Department, the Treasury Department, then-secretary of state John Kerry, and his father, who Jauhari said had the "Libya file" in the Obama administration.
"Since he travels with dad, he is connected everywhere in Europe and Asia," Jauhari wrote of Hunter Biden, adding that he even "has access to highest level in [China]."
Jauhari warned his correspondent, Sheikh Mohammed al-Rahbani, an Obama donor, that Hunter Biden's substance abuse may prove an issue.
"His negatives are that he is alcoholic, drug addict – kicked [out] of U.S. Army for cocaine, chasing low class hookers, constantly needs money-liquidity problems and many more headaches," Jauhari wrote. Biden was discharged from the Navy Reserve, not the Army, after he tested positive for cocaine in 2014.
Business Insider said it found the emails while "reporting on an unrelated matter," not among files on Hunter Biden's now-infamous laptop, which contains emails and documents of Biden that peddle his political connections and images and videos of him abusing drugs and engaging in sex acts with what appear to be prostitutes.
An attorney for al-Rahbani told Business Insider that his client "knows to a certainty that he never spoke to and has no recollection of talking about Hunter Biden."