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Judicial Watch, Inc. is a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, which promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.

Judicial Watch, Inc. is a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, which promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.

Because no one
is above the law!


Tom Fitton's Judicial Watch Weekly Update

Biden Dog Attack Scandal Worsens!

Hunter Verdict Update
Records Detail Disturbing Biden Dog Attacks on Secret Service Personnel
Hearing Held on Reopening Lawsuit for President Biden’s Senate Records
Jack Smith’s Questionable Past
Financial Impact of Illegals on Public Education System Is ‘Staggering’


Hunter Verdict Update

The Bidens are going down in the history books with the inaugural felony conviction of a First Family member. Unlike former President Trump, Hunter Biden received a fair trial. This guilty verdict is an important first step toward accountability for Biden family corruption.

The public would do well to remember that the Justice Department was dragged, kicking and screaming into this prosecution of Hunter. Our successful Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) litigation, exposing federal special protection and the cover-up of Hunter Biden’s gun scandal, shows how this case could have been brought years ago.

We’ve been at the forefront of pressuring the federal government to come clean about its role in protecting Hunter Biden.

We sued the FBI for records regarding the gun owned by Hunter Biden that reportedly was thrown in a trash can behind a Delaware grocery store. In a joint status report to the court, the FBI stated it would not produce records about the incident due to an “ongoing criminal investigation.”

In February 2023, from a separate lawsuit, we released records from the United States Secret Service that implicated the FBI in the unusual action of helping Hunter Biden.

In response to a February 24, 2021, email inquiry from Politico reporter Ben Schreckinger regarding the Secret Service’s involvement in the investigation of the Hunter Biden gun incident, the Communications Department asks for “more information or documentation.” Schreckinger responds: “Sure thing. Agents visited StarQuest Shooters & Survival Supply and asked to take possession of the paperwork Hunter had filled out to purchase a gun there. The FBI also had some involvement in the investigation.”

In October 2020, The Blaze reported that in October 2018, Hunter Biden’s handgun was taken by Hallie Biden, the widow of then-presidential nominee Joe Biden’s son Beau. In 2021, Politico reported:

Hallie took Hunter’s gun and threw it in a trash can behind a grocery store, only to return later to find it gone.

Delaware police began investigating, concerned that the trash can was across from a high school and that the missing gun could be used in a crime, according to law enforcement officials and a copy of the police report obtained by POLITICO.

But a curious thing happened at the time: Secret Service agents approached the owner of the store where Hunter bought the gun and asked to take the paperwork involving the sale, according to two people, one of whom has firsthand knowledge of the episode and the other was briefed by a Secret Service agent after the fact.

We have several FOIA lawsuits and information requests focused on Biden family corruption.

We are suing the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for all agency records relating to the Department of Justice or Internal Revenue Service (IRS) investigations of Hunter Biden and all records relating to efforts to interview lawyer Patrick Kevin Morris regarding Hunter Biden.

In June 2023, we sued the CIA for all communications of the spy agency’s Prepublication Classification Review Board (PCRB) regarding an October 19, 2020, email request to review and “clear” a letter signed by 51 former intelligence community officials characterizing the Hunter Biden laptop story as having “all the earmarks of a Russian disinformation campaign.”

In July 2023, we sued the DOJ for records from the Office of the Attorney General and Office of the Deputy Attorney General regarding the Internal Revenue Service investigation of Hunter Biden.

In June 2023, we filed a lawsuit against the Department of Justice for a copy of the FBI FD-1023 form that describes “an alleged criminal scheme involving then-Vice President Biden and a foreign national relating to the exchange of money for policy decisions.” Judicial Watch also asked for communications about the FD-1023.

In May 2023, we filed a FOIA lawsuit against the National Archives for Biden family records and communications regarding travel and finance transactions, as well as communications between the Bidens and several known business associates.

On October 14, 2022, we sued the DOJ for all records in the possession of FBI Supervisory Intelligence Analyst Brian Auten regarding an August 6, 2020, briefing provided to members of the U.S. Senate. Ron Johnson (R-WI) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) raised concerns that the briefing was intended to undermine the senators’ investigation of Hunter Biden.

We filed a lawsuit against the U.S. State Department on April 20, 2022, for messages sent through the SMART (State Messaging and Archive Retrieval Toolkit) system that mention Hunter Biden.

In December 2020, State Department records obtained through a Judicial Watch FOIA lawsuit showed that former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie “Masha” Yovanovitch had specifically warned in 2017 about corruption allegations against Burisma Holdings.

In October 2020, we forced the release of State Department records that included a briefing checklist of a February 22, 2019, meeting in Kyiv between then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Sally Painter, co-founder and chief operating officer of Blue Star Strategies, a Democratic lobbying firm which was hired by Burisma Holdings to combat corruption allegations. At the time of the meeting, Hunter Biden was serving on the board of directors for Burisma Holdings.


Records Detail Disturbing Biden Dog Attacks on Secret Service Personnel

Joe and Jill Biden let their dogs attack dozens of Secret Service and White House personnel.

Judicial Watch just received 116 pages of records from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that reveal the details about several incidents in which Secret Service personnel were bitten, sometimes requiring medical attention.

The records come in response to a February 2024 lawsuit we filed after the DHS failed to respond to a September 27, 2023, FOIA request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (No. 1:24-cv-00429)). We asked for:

Any and all records related to incidents of aggression and bites involving the Biden family dog, “Commander”, including but not limited to communications sent to and from USSS officials in the Uniformed and Non-Uniformed Divisions involved in White House operations and the Presidential Protection Division.

The records include a September 12, 2023, email between Secret Service officials stating:

POTUS took Commander (on a leash) to the Kennedy Garden this evening for a walk. While POTUS and Commander were in the Kennedy Garden I was standing half way from the Book-Sellers and the Family Theater. POTUS opened the Book-Seller door and said [redacted]. As I started to walk toward him to see if he needed help, Commander ran through his legs and bit my left arm through the front of my jacket. I pulled my arm away and yelled no. POTUS also yelled [redacted] to Commander. POTUS then [redacted]. I obliged and Commander let me pet him. When turning to close the door, Commander jumped again and bit my left arm for the second time. POTUS again yelled at Commander and attached the leash to him. My suit coat has 3 holes,1 being all the way through. No skin was broken.

On September 14, 2023, an agent in the Presidential Protective Detail, whose name is redacted, using the subject line “5/12/2021” sent an email to a colleague with several attachments, including photos of suits, repair estimates and a “Damage to Personal Property” form indicating that a dog biting incident had occurred on May 12, 2021. In the claim form, the agent asks for $943 for a new suit, because: “Through no fault or negligence of my own, the coat was torn by a dog bite.”

On September 25, 2023, a sergeant in the Uniformed Division emails a colleague that Commander bit an agent that day.

You currently have [redacted] and [redacted] available after 2055 hours.

FYI – there was a dog bite and the Officer may need to go the hospital.

[Redacted] is covering for [redacted] who was at [redacted].

Have a safe shift!

A Secret Service log the same day reported that at 8:06 p.m. on September 25, 2023:



At 8:08 p.m. the log notes:

OFC. [redacted] [redacted] ADVISED WHITE HOUSE MEDICAL HELD POST [redacted].

OFC. [redacted] [redacted] ADVISED FAMILY PET 2nd FLOOR RESIDENCE.”

The last entry in the log indicates “[8:58 p.m.] – CAPT. [redacted] REQUEST JOC [Joint Operations Center] LOG TO BE DELETED.”

The next day, CNN reporter Betsy Klein emails the Secret Service asking, “if you are able to confirm that a uniformed female USSS officer was hospitalized for a biting incident with Commander Biden last night.”

Anthony Guglielmi, chief of communications, replies:

Yesterday around 8pm, a Secret Service Uniformed Division police officer came in contact with a First Family pet and was bitten. The officer was treated by medical personnel on complex and I am not aware of any hospitalization.

The CNN report produced multiple queries from various media outlets. Guglielmi sent the same response to each.

A September 27, 2023, email from a Secret Service worker’s compensation official in the Safety, Health & Environmental Division writes to several colleagues: “Heads up and FYI. TMZ just reported a dog bite at the White House! Can we please find a way to get this dog muzzled.”

A colleague asks, “How does TMZ know before we do???” An official in the same division responds “Not sure. We must get this dog muzzled.” Another replies, “Geezzzz…” Another adds, “Unbelievable!”

Two days earlier an article was published, which notes (referencing Judicial Watch disclosures) “President Biden’s Dog Commander Allegedly Bit 7 People.”

These documents show Joe Biden is personally responsible for attacks by his dog Commander on Secret Service personnel. No wonder the Biden White House forced us to go to federal court for these records.

Our FOIA requests and lawsuits exposed initial White House falsehoods about the severity and number of attacks by the Bidens’ previous dog, Major. We then received a tip that Commander was also attacking Secret Service personnel and uncovered documents last July showing 10 biting incidents.

According to a Judicial Watch source, President Biden mistreated his dogs. The source disclosed Biden punched and kicked his dogs.

In February 2024 we received 269 pages of records related to incidents of aggression by Commander, including at least 23 biting incidents. After one incident, East Wing public tours were stopped for approximately 20 minutes due to the blood on the floor. These records include a spreadsheet of 22 incident reports between October 2022 and June 2023, 10 of which required medical treatment.

On May 14, 2024, we filed a separate lawsuit after the Department of Homeland Security failed to respond to a February 28, 2024, FOIA request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (No. 1:24-cv-01397)). Judicial Watch is asking for:

All emails and text messages sent to and from the following officials regarding the submission of CA-1 Forms (“Notice of Traumatic Injury and Claim for Continuation of Pay or Compensation”) in connection with bites by Biden family dogs: Director Kimberly Cheatle, Deputy Dir. Ronald Rowe, Chief Operating Officer Cynthia Radway, Asst. Dir. Michael Plati, Asst. Dir. Brian Lambert, Chief Human Capital Officer Denise Walker Hall, Asst. Dir. David Smith, Asst. Dir. Miltom Wilson, Uniformed Division Chief Michael Buck, Chief Counsel Thomas Huse, and Chief of Communications Anthony Guglielmi.


Hearing Held on Reopening Lawsuit for President Biden’s Senate Records

We were in the Superior Court of the State of Delaware this week for a hearing on our petition to reopen our case for the release of Joe Biden’s Senate records kept at the University of Delaware. We have powerful evidence that the courts were misled about the Biden papers.

Judicial Watch and the Daily Caller News Foundation asked the court to reopen the case in light of the findings of Special Counsel Robert Hur that contradict representations made under oath by representatives of the University of Delaware that no consideration was paid to Biden in connection with his gift of his Senate records.

In July 2020, we filed the FOIA lawsuit for the records, which are housed at the university’s library (Judicial Watch Inc. and The Daily Caller News Foundation v. DE Department of Justice and University of Delaware (No. N20A-07-001 CEB)).

In July 2023 the Delaware Supreme Court sided with the university, denying the release of the records because the university stated to the courts that no tax dollars were used to manage them.

On February 5, 2024, Hur released his report on the scandal. It calls into question the representations by the university that no state tax dollars were used to manage the papers, which Hur also found to have contained unlawfully retained classified information.

In its petition to reopen the case, we argue:

The [university’s affidavit] provides, in relevant part, that no consideration was paid to President Biden, “State funded or otherwise,” in connection with the Senatorial Papers. To the contrary, the Special Counsel Report found that “Mr. Biden asked two of his former longtime Senate staffers to review his boxes in courtesy storage,” and that “[t]he staffers were paid by the University of Delaware to perform the pre-gift review….”

“The Hur report revelations are absolutely stunning,” said Michael Bastasch, editor-in-chief for the Daily Caller News Foundation. “The University of Delaware has some serious explaining to do.”

At the hearing’s conclusion, the judge said he would rule “relatively soon.”


Jack Smith’s Questionable Past 

Anti-Trump prosecutor Jack Smith has an interesting and troubling professional background. Micah Morrison, our chief investigative reporter, looks back in Investigative Bulletin.

The International Criminal Court at the Hague was back in the news recently with the announcement by its chief prosecutor that he would seek charges against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant for war crimes in Gaza, while simultaneously seeking charges against the leaders of Hamas for war crimes in Israel. This obscene act of moral equivalency tells you all you need to know about the ICC. It’s also a reminder that the most powerful prosecutor at work in the U.S. today, Special Counsel Jack Smith, has significant connections to the controversial court and another Hague tribunal.

From 2008 to 2010, Smith was the Investigative Coordinator for the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC—the same office that today is seeking arrest warrants for Netanyahu and Gallant from a three-judge ICC panel. Founded in 2002 to pursue war crimes, the ICC has been viewed with skepticism by, among others, the U.S., Israel, Russia, China, and many African nations. In 2018, then-National Security Adviser John Bolton castigated the ICC for its failure to “deter and punish atrocity crimes” and its  “threat to American sovereignty.” Last week, reacting to news of the Netanyahu arrest warrant, the House voted to sanction the ICC.

ICC records indicate that during and shortly after Smith’s tenure at the organization, it brought cases against high-ranking figures in the Congo, Sudan, Kenya, the Ivory Coast, and Libya. None appear to have resulted in convictions.

But back at Main Justice, Obama Administration figures were impressed. In 2010, Smith was plucked to head the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section—a big promotion for a relatively untested young prosecutor. He served until 2015, supervising cases against former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, New York power broker Sheldon Silver, former Congressman Rick Renzi, and CIA operative Jeffery Sterling, among others.

In 2014, Smith was eyed by Congressional investigators examining IRS targeting of conservative groups. Smith testified that following a meeting with IRS official Lois Lerner, his office “had a dialogue” with the FBI about opening investigations into conservative groups, according to a copy of the interview obtained by CNN. Smith said the conversations did not lead to investigations. It does not appear that the Smith work product from the House probe—interview transcripts, investigator notes, memos—was ever made public. Read more about Judicial Watch’s investigation of the IRS affair here.

By 2018, Smith was back at the Hague, this time as chief prosecutor for the Kosovo Specialist Chambers, anotherhighly unusual judicial body, formed to prosecute war crimes committed during the 1998-2000 Kosovo War. In 2020, Smith indicted the former president of Kosovo, Hasim Thaci, for war crimes committed in 1998 and 1999. Thaci was extradited to the Hague and his trial is currently underway.

In 2022, Attorney General Merrick Garland brought Smith back to the U.S. to take over the investigation of former president Donald Trump. The rest is history. Two indictments of Trump quickly followed, along with rising public concern about Smith’s targeting of the frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination.

Judicial Watch has launched several investigations of Smith. We’re closely tracking developments at the Hague for what they might reveal about Smith’s prosecutorial conduct. We sued the Justice Department after it denied our FOIA request for the names of senior staff working for Smith; Justice responded by asking a federal court to keep those names secret. We also sued for records and communications between Smith and state prosecutors in the separate Georgia investigation of Trump. To date, in that case, the Justice Department has refused to confirm or deny the existence of records, claiming that to do so would interfere with law enforcement proceedings. We’ll continue pressing forward on all fronts.


Financial Impact of Illegals on Public Education System Is ‘Staggering’

You can’t throw open the border to millions of people without consequences. One big cost for taxpayers and our children is in our schools, as our Corruption Chronicles blog shows.

Nearly half a million illegal immigrant minors have entered the United States through the porous Mexican border since President Joe Biden took office in 2021 and the financial impact on the nation’s public education system is staggering, according to information disclosed at a recent congressional hearing conducted to address the unprecedented crisis.

“Educating illegal immigrant children requires substantial resources, altering the learning environment for all students,” said Florida Congressman Aaron Bean, who chairs a subcommittee on early childhood, elementary and secondary education for the House Education and Workforce Committee. “Overcrowded classrooms, the need for new facilities, and strained student-to-teacher ratios are just some of the challenges,” Bean added, offering that in just four states—California, New York, Texas, and Arizona—the cost of integrating illegal immigrant children into public schools reached nearly three-quarters of a billion dollars in one fiscal year. “If we assume that every illegal immigrant child encountered by border patrol enters the school system, the cost nationwide would be over two billion dollars annually,” said the lawmaker who conducted the recent hearing, titled “The Consequences of Biden’s Border Chaos for K-12 Schools.”

Public schools are often the first to feel the impact of open border policies, according to testimony delivered at the hearing. That is partly because in 1982 the Supreme Court prohibited states from denying illegal immigrant children a public-school education. Since the ruling was issued, tens of millions of illegal aliens have entered the U.S. through the southern border with a substantial chunk enrolling in public schools across the country. Some come with family and others come without a guardian, which the government classifies as Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC). Besides providing them with a free taxpayer-funded education, Uncle Sam also spends billions of dollars annually to house, medically treat and entertain UAC. Last year the Biden administration quietly doled out tens of millions of dollars for the long-term foster care of UAC to further assist migrants under the age of 17, including pregnant and parenting teens and those who are especially vulnerable or with other special needs.

The impact on public education is just a snippet of the problem. Several examples were offered at the recent congressional hearing. In New York students were switched to online learning because nearly 2,000 illegal immigrants were sheltered in a school gymnasium. In Austin, Texas teachers had to conduct classes in hallways and conference rooms to accommodate over 400 newly enrolled illegal immigrant children. In Denver, Colorado an influx of over 40,000 illegal immigrants forced the state to spend an extra $24 million to cover the cost. In Chicago the mayor says the city’s resources are “tapped out,” and a local teacher reveals that over 40% of students qualify for English learner services and the numbers keep growing. In Massachusetts public schools have absorbed 2,000 new illegal immigrant students, forcing districts to find emergency housing with little notice. In New Mexico there have been incidents of adult-age illegal immigrants hiding in a middle school to avoid apprehension from Border Patrol, which led to the arrest of six illegal immigrants and prompted temporary lockdowns.

Last year a congressional report that revealed the cost of illegal immigration is greater than the annual gross domestic product of 15 states disclosed that nearly four million illegal aliens attend public schools around that country and most receive special services for Limited English Proficiency (LEP) costing American taxpayers nearly $59 billion. New York City alone is spending around $440 million to educate about 11,500 illegal aliens who will likely remain in the system for years to come. Laughably, at last week’s K-12 congressional hearing only one witness—from the National Council of La Raza—testified that the nation’s education system actually benefits from the influx of illegal immigrants. Her name is Amalia Chamorro, education policy director at the leftist nonprofit. “In our nation’s schools, immigrant students are a significant asset in their classrooms,” Chamorro testified. “They are known for their resilience, grit, and problem-solving skills, which are critical for 21st-century learning. In fact, research shows that immigrant students have such a high level of motivation to succeed and learn, they contribute to positive classroom environments that benefit all students.”


Until next week,


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