The prosecutors leading the charge against Gal Luft, who claims to have damning information about the Biden family's ties to China, have donated to President Joe Biden and other Democrats, campaign finance records show.
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan unsealed charges this week against Luft, who claims to have given the FBI information in 2019 about the Biden family's Chinese business dealings. Assistant U.S. attorneys Catherine Ghosh and Daniel Richenthal, who conducted the interview with Luft in 2019, are the two lead prosecutors on his case, court records show. Both have contributed exclusively to Democrats. Ghosh made 35 contributions in the 2020 election cycle to Biden's campaign and the Democratic National Committee, according to campaign finance records. Richenthal contributed to the 2008 Obama-Biden campaign when he served in private practice, the records show.
The revelations come as IRS whistleblowers and Republicans question whether federal prosecutors, for political reasons, stymied investigations into Hunter Biden's foreign business dealings. IRS whistleblowers have alleged that Biden-appointed federal prosecutors in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., blocked requests to file tax charges against Hunter Biden in their jurisdictions. The whistleblowers also claim that investigators were prohibited from fully investigating the Biden family's foreign business ventures, including with CEFC China Energy.
The charges against Luft have already sparked allegations of a double standard in how the administration investigates the first family.
"The amazing thing is we don't prosecute foreign corruption and failure to register as a foreign agent when it's Hunter Biden. We do when it's somebody who specifically is accusing and says they have information about the wrongdoing of the Biden family," Rep. Darrell Issa (R., Calif.) said this week after Luft's indictment was unsealed.
Prosecutors charged Luft, the co-director of the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security, with violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act through his work for CEFC China Energy. He is accused of recruiting former CIA director James Woolsey on behalf of CEFC China Energy to write articles touting pro-Beijing policies. According to the indictment, Luft failed to register with the Justice Department for his work for a "Chinese foreign principal."
Hunter Biden has avoided similar charges, even though CEFC China Energy paid him nearly $6 million for business and legal consulting in 2017 and 2018. Joe Biden was also allegedly involved in his son's work for CEFC China Energy. Longtime Biden family friend Rob Walker told the FBI in December 2020 that Joe Biden and his son took part in a meeting with CEFC China Energy executives at the Four Seasons in Washington, D.C. That contradicts Joe Biden's claims to have no involvement in his son's business ventures.
Richenthal and Ghosh have investigated CEFC China Energy since at least 2017 when they handled the prosecution of Patrick Ho, a CEFC China Energy executive with ties to both Hunter Biden and Luft. Ho was indicted in November 2017 for attempting to bribe two African officials on behalf of CEFC China Energy. CEFC China Energy paid Hunter Biden $1 million to represent Ho in the case.
Richenthal asked the judge presiding over the Ho case to redact Biden’s name from emails introduced as evidence at trial, according to court transcripts.
"Our view is that the name of that individual is not relevant and could introduce a political dimension to this case that we don't think is worth dealing with," Richenthal said at Ho’s trial, referring to a December 2015 email in which Hunter Biden was invited to a dinner with CEFC China Energy chairman Ye Jianming.
Luft met with Richenthal, Ghosh, and four FBI agents in Brussels in March 2019, shortly after Ho was convicted at his bribery trial. Luft has said he told the prosecutors that CEFC China Energy paid Hunter Biden to use the Biden family’s connections to the FBI in order to find out whether CEFC China Energy and its chairman, Ye Jianming, were under investigation. Luft also said he told prosecutors that CEFC China Energy paid Hunter Biden to promote the Belt and Road Initiative, the Chinese government’s infrastructure investment initiative.
Prosecutors charged Luft with lying during the interviews in Brussels, which occurred on March 28 and 29, 2019, regarding his attempts to broker weapons sales on behalf of CEFC China Energy.
The U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan did not respond to a request for comment.