Hunter Biden indicted on gun charges

The indictment notes that when buying guns, people must fill out a form saying –– among other things — that they do not use illegal drugs. In October of 2018, the indictment continues, Biden bought a gun despite being a drug user. It says he owned a Colt Cobra revolver for about 11 days — from “on or about” Oct. 12, 2018, until “on or about” Oct. 23, 2018.

If convicted, Biden could face up to 25 years in prison and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines. However, sentences are often issued below the maximum length allowed, and some defendants don’t face jail time at all.

Lawyers for Hunter Biden did not immediately return a request for comment. A White House spokesperson referred POLITICO to the Justice Department and the first son’s lawyers for comment.

The president’s son wrote in his memoir that he frequently used crack cocaine during the window of time referenced in the indictment. He has openly discussed his struggles with drug abuse, which were particularly intense after the death of his older brother.

The charges could tee up a fight over the Second Amendment. His lawyers previously told prosecutors that if he faced the charges leveled today, they would argue that the law banning drug users from possessing guns is unconstitutional under the Second Amendment. Chief Justice John Roberts’ conservative Supreme Court majority has dramatically expanded Second Amendment rights in recent years, which Biden’s legal team cited in communications with the Justice Department that POLITICO reviewed.

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