“It wasn’t just Ukraine. A U.S. senator is now investigating whether Hunter Biden improperly benefited from his business ties to a Chinese investment firm that has partnered with a Chinese-backed aviation company keen on stealing U.S. national security secrets. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa) received a classified briefing about the foreign investment deal on Friday, the Washington Free Beacon has learned.
The Aviation Industry Corporation of China had raised national security concern in the U.S. before. American national security officials and independent analysts strongly suspected that the company, a major supplier of military jets in China, had hacked U.S. networks to steal the design of the F-35 jet and used the design to build its own stealth jet fighters.
In 2015, the Chinese aviation giant partnered with BHR Partners, a state-backed Chinese equity firm, to acquire Henniges Automotive, a U.S. auto company that produces technologies with military applications. Biden has sat on BHR’s board since 2013. The $600 million acquisition was one of the largest by a Chinese company of a U.S.-based auto company.
(…) Grassley initially raised concerns about the deal in an August letter, pointing to potential Obama-era conflicts of interest. The State Department, then led by John Kerry, had to approve the deal. Kerry’s stepson, Christopher Heinz, worked side by side with Biden as an investor in BHR and stood to benefit directly from the deal. Biden’s father, Joe Biden, was the vice president at the time the deal was approved. Grassley has requested detailed information about how the deal was approved, what role White House personnel played in the decision, and whether they followed proper procedure.
“There is cause for concern that potential conflicts of interest could have influenced CFIUS approval of the Henniges transaction,” Grassley wrote in the letter. CFIUS is the interagency committee that determines whether a foreign investment in the United States is a national security risk. “Accordingly, Congress and the public must fully understand the decision-making process that led to the Henniges approval and the extent to which CFIUS fully considered the transaction’s national security risks.” (Read more: The Washington Free Beacon, 10/28/2019) (Archive)
An excerpt from Senator Grassley’s letter: