June 5, 2024 / by emptywheel


Bringing Receipts: Print Date: 10/22/20

The Delaware Courthouse has started making exhibits from the Hunter Biden trial available. There are a few interesting tidbits about the paperwork from the gun shop.

The background check form shows that it was submitted at 6:36PM on October 12, 2018 and came back at 6:37PM.

We knew that already. Ronald Parlimere, the gun shop owner who tried to politicize this in 2020 only to belatedly attempt to doctor the forms in 2021 when the ATF came asking, emphasized that detail to Derek Hines and Erika Jensen when they asked him about the belatedly doctored records a few weeks ago.

Based on Palimere’s review of the documents related to the sale of the revolver, Biden made the purchase of several items including the Colt Cobra revolver at approximately 6:36 p.m. on October 12, 2018. The FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) check came back in about a minute and was a very fast response.

In the interview, Parlimere made some kind of connection between reviewing the form and media attention from people like Tucker Carlson he says happened in 2021. That seems to be one of his excuses for not properly annotating the change to the form three years after the fact (the other being, he didn’t want to call Hunter Biden to get the proper ID he hadn’t gotten years earlier).

Palimere scanned and emailed the certified 4473 to Reisch using his StarQuest email address, [email protected]. Palimere uses this email address exclusively and it is not shared by other StarQuest employees. The form was then filed away. Palimere did not handle the form again for three years and until he was requested to turn it over to ATF SA Veronica Hnat on September 23, 2021.

In 2021, Palimere had significant media attention and he had news crews, Tucker Carlson, the ATF and the FBI contacting him. He received numerous contacts from media including to his email address and on his phone.

Palimere was contacted by Hnat who said she wanted to come by to take custody of the Form 4473. Palimere ultimately went to the ATF building in Wilmington, Delaware, and turned over the annotated 4473. Palimere received a receipt for property from the ATF. Hnat allowed Palimere to make a copy of the annotated 4473 for his records.


At the time it was a big scandal and there was intense attention on the incident. It was on prime time on every news channel and USSS was saying they never went into StarQuest. Palimere and the other employees heard that Mac Isaac of the computer store was in protective custody. They were all scared to death. Palimere felt it was necessary to annotate the Form 4473 because he felt they were going to get in trouble just for going up against Biden.

Anyway, what I find interesting about the timing of the background check is that it took another 16 minutes to ring up the purchase, as indicated by the red rectangle on the receipt.

I’m not sure long it should take after all the approvals are done. I do know that Parlimere told Hines and Jensen he wanted to get Hunter out of the store as quickly as possible.

In the case of Biden’s sale, Gordon Cleveland, was the salesman. Palimere was sitting at his desk in the back and Cleveland said something to the effect of, “Hey, Hunter Biden’s here. He wants to use his passport.” Palimere was familiar with Biden’s father’s not being a gun supporter so Palimere thought it would be bad for Palimere’s business to have Hunter Biden seen in his store. Palimere wanted to get the sale completed and get Biden out of the store, so Palimere said yes to using the passport as identification. Palimere never interacted with Biden.

Should it have taken 16 more minutes?

I have no idea. I look forward to Gordon Cleveland’s testimony. He doesn’t have a proffer immunizing him, after all.

According to Erika Jensen’s testimony yesterday, she herself subpoenaed this exhibit.

BY MR. HINES: Q. So looking at the background check paperwork, what does this document appear to show, could you explain it?

A. This is a response for a check of a subject’s background in order to see if they qualify to purchase a firearm.

Q. And when you look at the status on the bottom, what is the status for whether or not Mr. Biden passed the background check?

A. The status response is proceed.

Q. And is that after — that was in the production after the Form 4473; correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, turning to page, government’s Exhibit 13(a), page 1, government’s Exhibit 13(a), page 1, is that a receipt — take it down. Is that a receipt that you received from StarQuest?

A. This is a receipt I received in response to the subpoena to StarQuest.

Given the Bates stamp, it would have been included in the production certified by StarQuest on April 24, 2024.

After admitting the exhibit, which was subpoenaed last fall, Derek Hines walked Agent Jensen through the receipt, showing each of the items Hunter Biden bought back on October 12, 2018.

MR. HINES: Move for the admission of 13(a).

MR. LOWELL: No objection.

THE COURT: Thank you. It’s admitted. (Exhibit No. 13(a) was admitted into evidence.)

BY MR. HINES: Q. If we zoom in on the top. Can you please list what the items are that are listed on this receipt?

A. The first item was an Item Number 18654, was a Colt Cobra 38 Special, Talo Classic, with a serial number RA551363.

Then cuing her by asking not what the date was but whether it was the date that Hunter had withdrawn $500 from an ATM, she noted that the date of the receipt itself is October 12, 2018.

Q. This was the day $500 was withdrawn from the ATM?

A. This was on October 12, 2018.

Q. Looking at the bottom, does it say Robert Biden?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you redact the address that’s listed there?

A. Yes.

Hines made two errors. Hunter didn’t withdraw the money from an ATM. He went to a teller, which was rare for Hunter Biden. And it was $5,000, not $500. We know that, in part, because prosecutors want to compare his signature on the withdrawal form with the signature on the gun purchase form.

Ah well. In the grand scheme of the errors Derek Hines has made, I consider this a fairly minor one.

Anyway, until after we get the Cleveland testimony — to learn why it took another 16 minutes to complete the sale — I’ll hold off on my curiosity about why it took 16 minutes to complete the sale.

In the meantime, though, I want to consider what the other date on the receipt means.

October 22, 2020.

You see, according to Abbe Lowell, in October 2020, Palimere and some buddies had “a plan to send [Hunter’s gun purchase form] to others” to make sure “the gun sale issue and the form [would be] exposed during the Presidential campaign.” But first they “had to get their stories straight.”

It also reveals a now-exposed attempt by the gun store to fabricate a false narrative about the gun sale. Palimere said the addition of the seller transaction serial number (“5,653”) may have been added on October 26, 2018. (TAB 4, Palimere FD-302 at 4). He said the vehicle registration reference was added in 2021. Yet, the government provided WhatsApp communications from October 2020 and February 2021 between Palimere, friends of his, and then-Delaware state trooper Vincent Clemons3 (see TABs 6 – 6C), all of which refer to the form, a plan to send it to others, needing to get their stories straight about what occurred in 2020, and wanting the gun sale issue and the form exposed during the Presidential campaign.

3 Not to be lost is the fact that Clemons was the Delaware State Police officer who first arrived at Janssens’ grocery store on October 23, 2018 when Hallie Biden threw a bag containing the handgun into a trash can in front of the store. It was Clemons who took statements about the handgun from both Hallie and Hunter Biden and was part of filling out an official police report on the issue. Two years later, he is in the communications with Palimere about the Form 4473, one of which states: “Yep your side is simple – Hunter bought a gun from you, he filled out the proper forms and the Feds approved him for a purchase.” (emphasis added). Palimere later responded, “I’ll keep it short and sweet as well: Hunter bought a gun. The police visited me asking for verification of the purchase and that’s all I can recall from that day. It was over 2 years ago.” (TAB 6B, 10/26/20 Palimere-Clemons Texts at 4, 6.) The reference to filling out the “proper forms” is not lost on defense counsel given what transpired thereafter. And, despite the importance of Clemons (e.g., the person who actually took the statements), the Special Counsel is foregoing him as a witness to call two other Delaware officers instead.

Derek Hines says that’s not right, and successfully pitched all this a claim of political bias.

These selected portions3 of communications by Palimere to two friends and also to Sgt. Clemons – were made two years after the events in question when defendant’s father was a political candidate. The defendant inaccurately summarizes them as referring “to the form, a plan to send it to others, needing to get their stories straight about what occurred in 2020, and wanting the gun sale issue and the form exposed during the Presidential campaign.” Supp. Resp. p. 8 and n. 3. Nevertheless, he clearly wishes to confuse the jury by introducing these spliced, non-relevant communications to incite prejudice and emotion among the jury to distract from the elements of the crimes that were complete years before.

And because she fell for one of Derek Hines’ false claims again, Judge Noreika prohibited any of these communications from 2020 from coming in as evidence.

3. Questioning, testimony, evidence or argument, including but not limited to, the additional exhibits designated by the Defendant as tabs “6-6C” to his supplemental submission regarding any witnesses’ political bias are excluded from introduction or admission at trial because such questioning, testimony, evidence or argument is not relevant, is unduly prejudicial and invites nullification.3

2 The government has stated that it intends to call Gordon Cleveland, a gun shop employee, who will testify that he watched Defendant fill out Section A of the Certified Form and that Defendant checked “no” to question 11e about being an unlawful user or addict. Both the Certified Form and the 2021 Form have the same check mark (“X”) responding “no” to question 11e. The addition of “DE VEHICLE REGISTRATION” to a different section of the 2021 Form after the Defendant filled it out does not have “any tendency to make” those two facts, which are “fact[s] of consequence in determining” the charges – that he filled it out and that he said he wasn’t an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance – more or less probable. F.R.E. 401. The Court also agrees with the government that Defendant’s conspiratorial theory about “doctored” forms and currying favor with the government is unsupported rhetoric, which would be prejudicial and confusing to the jury.

Through his considerable power of prosecutorial dickishness, Derek Hines got Judge Maryellen Noreika to exclude these 2020 communications from evidence.

And then he submitted one himself.

Update: In leading gun salesman Gordon Cleveland in the sale yesterday, Derek Hines corrected himself to say that this was a reprint of the receipt.

Q. I’m showing you Exhibit 13(a). Is this the receipt, a reprint of the receipt that rang out the sale for Mr. Biden that day?

A. Yes, it is.

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Originally Posted @ https://www.emptywheel.net/2024/06/05/bringing-receipts-print-date-10-22-20/